A Sefton lady can chat to family and friends in the comfort of her own home now that she has been gifted a portable wireless unit from Riverside.
Nikki Moss from Riverside’s Ashton Court retirement living scheme in Birkdale was given a Mi-fi unit for her laptop so she can surf the internet anywhere she likes.
Riverside has purchased hundreds of the gadgets and technical equipment so residents in supported accommodation across the country can stay connected with the outside world during the Covid-19 crisis.
Nikki said: “I’m really pleased with the Mi-fi unit, it’s brilliant and provides a really fast signal which never fades away. I can immediately connect to the internet.
“When the lounge had to close due to the Covid-19 pandemic I would sit outside in the corridor to get a signal, but now I can do it in the comfort of my apartment and keep in contact with family and friends.
“I never expected to receive one from Riverside, I was also offered a digital tablet but I said I’m happy with my laptop. I’m really pleased, it’s fantastic and it was a lovely surprise when a member of staff gave it to me.”
Many retirement living residents in Sefton are benefitting from Mi-Fi units which is a portable wireless router that connects the user to the internet via a cellular network, data SIM cards and digital tablets which have either been gifted to people who need them or given to schemes which is then loaned to residents.
Residents from Haigh Court in Southport have benefited from the digital devices during lockdown with one lady making the most of her tablet and Mi-fi unit by doing some training online. She also uses it to video call her family and attends church services online instead of using her mobile phone.
The project is funded by the Riverside Foundation which is the housing association’s charity that helps people overcome obstacles for a better quality of life.
Andy Cave, Riverside’s Project Officer who is managing the roll-out of equipment to residents, said: “These digital tablets are a lifeline for many of our customers who are in challenging circumstances, so it will enable them to keep in contact with family and friends as well as being able to check their benefit claims, look after finances and do all the other things we take for granted.
“We worked with EE to get the best deal for the equipment and provide an appropriate data package for residents. It is a vital resource to those that haven’t been able to use the communal lounge due to the government’s social distancing measures and as a result haven’t been able to access the scheme’s Wi-Fi.
“We have listened to what our customers have been telling us during lockdown and we believe this gesture will really help those people in greatest need. It will benefit people of from 18 to 86 and from all kinds of backgrounds, but who have one thing in common in that they have been incredibly isolated, frustrated and lonely during these last two months. We hope residents will feel less socially isolated as they will be able to keep in touch with loved ones.”
Riverside is one of the largest provider of homelessness services in the country, and its Care and Support operation works with over 16,000 customers every year.