Three has announced a nationwide rollout and further investment in its pioneering digital skills initiative Discovery, as part of its ongoing commitment to empower and educate local communities by teaching them essential online skills.

Three will make free digital training available in Scotland for the first time. Discovery was first launched in Maidenhead as a concept store in 2015, before being rolled out to Swansea and Islington. Due to its success, Three has expanded the initiative to Scotland.

The Discovery Scotland team will take free digital skills sessions to individuals, schools, local groups and small businesses in the Glasgow and Edinburgh areas in a bid to reach more of the community than ever before.

This move into Scotland coincides with Three becoming a signatory of Scotland’s Digital Participation Charter, an initiative created by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) with the support of the Scottish Government. The Charter focuses on improving digital skills across Scotland, where more than 21% of adults are known to lack basic digital skills.

Paula Cave, Director of retail, Three, said:

“We believe that access to the internet is a basic human right. 90% of jobs require people to have basic digital skills[i] so it is now more important than ever that we help people get to grips with the digital world. Our duty as a mobile network goes above and beyond simply providing people with a means to communicate with one another. We feel a responsibility to ensure that people are given the necessary skills to get the most out of their device and reap the exciting rewards that come with being digitally competent.

“The move into Scotland is the next piece of the puzzle, meaning Discovery now spans the whole of the UK so we can provide digital skills to more people than ever before. We are delighted to be supporting Scotland’s Digital Participation Charter, as a reaffirmation of our commitment to reducing digital exclusion. We look forward to supporting community groups and individuals in the Glasgow and Edinburgh areas to create a digitally smarter Scotland.”

Discovery sessions have been designed to inspire people of all ages and skill levels to get more from being online and mobile whilst providing a safe, fun environment in which to explore and learn.

The team of specially trained Three staff can help with anything – whether it’s setting-up a Facebook page, an email address or LinkedIn profile, or a tutorial for small business owners on how to master the power of your mobile and effortlessly run their company on the go. The sessions or advice can even be entirely tailored to each customer via one-to-one sessions in stores.

David McNeill, Director of Digital at Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, said:

“Given the widespread use of smartphones and tablets, it’s easy to assume that most of Scotland’s population is digitally confident. However, our recent research shows the reality is that while many people use social media and consume content online, they do not have the full range of basic digital skills to enable them to make the most of the internet, whether saving money or applying for jobs.

“We’re delighted Three has joined the national movement to increase basic digital skills and confidence online, and committed to providing practical support through Discovery.”

Three has held over 250 sessions this year for community groups across the UK, including schools, charities, community centres and job centres. These sessions have reached 4,200 people and Discovery as a whole has assisted 10,000 people to date.

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