Getting online with the DigiBugs
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Teign Housing are helping their tenants get online through a popular new initiative, DigiBugs.

The Teign Housing DigiBugs are members of staff who have volunteered to offer drop-in sessions to Teign Housing’s tenants, every Wednesday at the housing association’s Newton Abbot town centre office. The DigiBugs offer basic IT support such as setting up an email account, using social media and paying rent and other bills online.

Julie Cleave, Teign Housing’s resident involvement lead and DigiBug volunteer said: “We are not IT experts, but we use computers everyday with our jobs so we can share what we do know with our tenants. Our sessions are one to one, are individually tailored to the tenant’s needs and are completely free. We have been really pleased with the response to the sessions and currently have eight regular students.”

Derek Holwill, Teign Housing tenant and DigiBug student from Exminster said: “I have never used a computer before and the DigiBugs have been very good at helping me. I now have an e-mail account set-up and I have paid my rent online for the first time too. There is still a lot I don’t know, but I can see them as and when I need to.”

Universal Credit, part of the Government’s welfare reform changes, is set to be introduced in the Teignbridge area in November 2015. This new way of claiming benefits will involve an online application form. Teign Housing are keen to support their tenants in getting online in preparation for this change.

Find out more about the DigiBugs on our getting online page