Assistance with accessing Digital Services
So much of life in the UK these days takes place on-line and it is essential that the family are fully digital. If they cannot access digital services with confidence they will struggle to adapt.
To that end, your Group needs to think about the following:
1. How can the Group itself assist the family? For example, could you supply them with a laptop and arrange WiFi as well as some direct training/assistance on logging onto various sites?
2. What local services, if any, can help the family with digital access and training?
Ideally, someone in your Group who is tech-savvy, can operate as a Digital Lead, helping the family members with online matters such as log-ins and setting up various accounts
Setting up Internet
The moment the family arrive in the UK, they will likely want to get online and contact their relatives - so it is important that they have access to internet on arrival.
The Home Office recommend that you initially set up a short-term wifi contract in the house, so that they are not tied into a long-term contract without any choice. You will need to decide whether the group will pay for this short-term contract, or if you will expect the family to repay.
You can also help them to find places with free computers and internet, such as local libraries.
Almost every family comes with their own smart phones - but it could be useful to have an old unlocked smartphone on hand, just in case. Once the family is settled, you will need to help the family find the best phone contract - but in the interim, will you provide pay-as-you-go or short-term contract sim card? You can find month-long contract sims for about £10-20 per month. Smarty is one example.
PAYG contracts can eat through data very quickly, so make sure they have good data options, or look for any add-ons that can increase this data. Make sure that they understand how it works, so that they don't run out of minutes or data too quickly.
Reset have useful advice on this subject here.
We would recommend that you add some useful apps/ bookmark useful web pages on the computer or tablet before the family arrive - such as Zoom and Google Translate. Set the language settings on the device & web browser to their native language.
Usernames and Passwords
The family will need to have a lot of new usernames and passwords. This is difficult for any of us to remember - but especially if it is written in a new language and a new script. So, think about a secure place that they can write down this important and confidential information, in case they forget.
You should never log onto the family's private bank, email or other accounts without their express permission, and for a clear purpose.
Filling out the Application Form: Assistance with accessing digital services
1.6g. How will your group empower the resettled family to access the internet?
EXAMPLE ANSWER: We’ll provide a laptop and/or tablet. We’ll explain it is a gift, and that they have responsibility for looking after it and fixing it if it breaks.
We’ll pay for wi-fi until their benefits have been received. We’ll choose a short-term wi-fi contract, so they can decide whether to pay going forward, or to use free options (e.g. local library).
We’ll provide a PAYG sim card on arrival, and then help them to choose a suitable phone contract. We’ll have an old unlocked smart phone on hand, in case they don’t have one.
The library runs free Digital Skills courses.