Yesterday I went to the home of a resident in Friern Barnet to see the first person receive one of our ‘computers for the elderly’. Admittedly not a snappy name and the resident himself may not like being thought of as ‘elderly’. So what’s it all about? Well about 18 months ago I visited a Christmas Lunch at the Finchley Baptist Church and met a sprightly 80 year old lady who was pleased as punch at being able to email her grandchildren and swap photos. I thought what a great way to bridge the generation gap and keep people in touch with their extended families and friends. Thus helping people who might otherwise be isolated at home.

Anyway – the Council replaces many of it’s computers every year and whilst they weren’t being skipped, (they were being re-used for charitable purposes outside of the Borough), they weren’t being re-used in Barnet. So now we offer our older residents, who may not be able to afford a computer, a refurbished one. We also put them in touch with organisations like Barnet College who can provide basic training.

In the next few months we expect to deliver over 100 computers. The Council is often a large impersonal machine, but for once I am pleased a straightforward idea became reality.