Communities urged to get online

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Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Michelle O’Neill has said it is vital to support rural communities across Northern Ireland to get online.

The Minister is encouraging people to attend a one-day drop in event to be held at CAFRE’s Enniskillen Campus on 15 March 2016 from 9.30am. The event will coincide with the application window for farmers to claim under the Basic Payment Scheme and the EU “Get Online” week. The event is open to farmers and everyone living in a rural community.

The event is being organised by DARD in partnership with the Department of Finance and Personnel’s (DFP) Digital Inclusion Unit as part of the Go ON NI initiative to encourage and support the rural community in improving and developing their digital skills and access DARD and other Government services online.

In adding her support for the event the Minister said: “Being online has never been more important. It opens doors on many levels and I greatly welcome this initiative, as one which will provide practical support to help the rural community to get online.

“Through the Go ON NI Rural event I want my department to demonstrate the range of support measures in place to help farmers and the wider rural community who either don’t have access to, or are unfamiliar, with the internet and online government services.”

The Minister continued: “For example, at the event there will be an opportunity to get involved in e-skills training in conjunction with CAFRE, local libraries and South West College, consider the range of broadband services available, and talk to DARD staff about submitting online applications for area based schemes.

“I wish to thank the Go ON NI partners for delivering this digital event. I believe it will play an important role in helping local communities get online in a meaningful way, and help develop new digital skills.”