Celebrating AbilityNet's long service volunteers!

Asim Khan volunteer with AbilityNet sitting in a chairThis upcoming Volunteers' Week (1-7 June), we are delighted to highlight some of our amazing Tech volunteers who have recently received Long Service Awards, for 10 years of helping others via their AbilityNet volunteer roles.

They, along with hundreds of others, have worked hard to provide free IT support to older people and disabled people of any age in their region, as part of our free IT Support at Home service (also available online).

Our Long Service Award volunteers

AbilityNet Tech volunteer Long Service Award recipients, pictured, are Asim Khan, Colin Hill, Henry Clark and Jo Garner.

Colin Hill holding his awardAsim Khan volunteers in West London and says of his role as a volunteer: "I get the opportunity to help others and that is so fulfilling. I am making a difference in people’s lives and having a positive impact by using my computer skills." 

"I visited someone recently, who was old and living alone. I found that she had network connectivity issues and her antivirus was not up to date. I spoke to the broadband supplier on her behalf and managed to fix the issue, updated the antivirus and showed her how to run scans, also how to update the antivirus definitions. She was very pleased to see her emails working as that was the only way she could stay in touch with her friends and relatives," says Asim.

Henry Clark smiling holding up his awardColin Hill, pictured (left) with his 10 year award, volunteers in Wiltshire.

"Colin is my local helper. He is so patient and understanding. He is a safe pair of hands I am so thankful," says a person who received IT Support at Home help from Colin.

Jo Garner standing with her framed award on the wall above her headHenry Clark also pictured holding his award has been volunteering in West London for the past decade.

"I enjoy volunteering with AbilityNet because I get to meet some very interesting people who have led fascinating lives," he says.

"I have helped a middle aged man who is totally blind on several occasions. Most recently I configured software on his new PC, including helping him to buy a new licence for this software and making sure it worked seamlessly with Microsoft Word. I also made sure that his new PC could access his new printer/scanner and showed him how to choose between his two printers on his old laptop," says Henry. 

Jo Garner, also from London, enthuses about volunteering with AbilityNet.

"I continue to enjoy being part of this organisation and the sessions and support that the central team provide is outstanding. All of my clients are very complimentary of the work that we do," says Jo.

Why volunteer with AbilityNet?

We're always keen to welcome new tech volunteers to AbilityNet's IT Support at Home service. If you're reading this and would like to get involved, please get in contact.

Some recent comments from our volunteers about what they enjoy about their roles:

  • "So rewarding, doing what I love and seeing people benefit, sometimes life changing, sometimes just making a client's life a bit easier, a bit more fun, a bit less isolated."
  • "I've done things out of my comfort zone. I get the support I need and reap the benefits of increasing my skills and confidence."
  • "Welcoming, supportive environment. Excellent training. Totally rewarding!"
  • "I have access to training and information sessions from a wide range of experts and love learning about new tech and how to make existing tech work for my clients."
  • "We work as a team and cover each other as and when required. Every volunteer at AbilityNet tries to provide high quality service, which is evident from the feedback we receive from those we help. AbilityNet arranges training seminars where volunteers can learn new skills related to the upcoming technology in the market, also networking seminars in different regions so volunteers have an opportunity to meet new people." 

Become an AbilityNet volunteer

Highlighting AbilityNet's impact

Ilustration of a collection of people standing with round bubbles alongside each - Text reads: Who we have helped and how: Individuals: 2056 students, 1340 employees, 4171 people at home, 1424,244 online visitors, 1,340 helpline customers“I’m 82 years old, I live alone and need my PC to stay connected to the world. I’ve spent months struggling to resolve problems with my PC. Since being directed to your organisation my life has been changed”. These are words from a client who received free technology support from one of AbilityNet's volunteers.

Reflecting on a year where technology played a vital role in keeping people connected, here are some headline results from our 2021 Impact Report

The summary outlines more of the positive impact our volunteers have on people's lives, including:

AbilityNet's impact on individuals:

  • 93% Customer satisfaction
  • 81% better able to use technology
  • 76% easier to manage day to day life
  • 60% greater participation in new activities
  • 85% more knowledgeable
  • 84% increased confidence
  • 70% more independent
  • 74% less stressed
  • 62% less isolated

Our impact on organisations:

  • 94% Customer satisfaction
  • 96% better user experience
  • 100% more knowledgeable
  • 90% more confident
  • 94% more inclusive
  • 94% positive impact on engagement

How AbilityNet can help

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people.

  • Call our free helpline. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution. We’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0800 048 7642
  • We have a range of factsheets that talk in detail about technology that might help you, which you can download for free. You may find our factsheets about voice recognition and keyboard alternatives useful.
  • My Computer My Way. A free interactive guide to all the accessibility features built into current desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
  • Meet AbilityNet volunteers from across the UK