Awesome article on some awesome Computers in Homes graduates in The Press:
Mum-of-five Falaiga Tumoli no longer has to rely on her children to show her basic computing skills.
Tumoli, and friend Julie Ausage recently graduated from the 2020 Communication Trust's Computers In Homes programme.
The Christchurch women were among some 28 families who received computers as part of Computers in Homes, which supports families with children at school to join the online world.
"My kids know more than me and I'm just old school. I wanted to further my computing skills," Tumoli said.
The graduation was the first for a new partnership between Rowley Avenue School, Computers in Homes and Pasifika PowerUp, which is an education programme that supports Pasifika parents and families to champion their children's learning.
Tumoli signed up for the 10-week course to get up to speed with her five children aged six to 15. She said new technology was all unfamiliar territory.
Tumoli and Ausage grew up with typewriters and without the internet.
"I never knew the basics of how. I only learnt because of my kids. I wanted to learn, so I've been watching my kids to see what they're doing," Tumoli said. "When this course came up, I went 'oh bingo'."
"It was the lottery," added Ausage.
They then completed a training session once a week for 10 weeks. There were ten Mums and Dads in their weekly two-hour class.
"It was good because we didn't know a lot of them but during the class we all became close," Tumoli said.
They started with the basics and learnt how to use power point, Microsoft Office and touch typing.
Tumoli ran a children's play group at Rowley Avenue School, with the help of Ausage. The pair were now looking forward to incorporating their new skills into their daily work.
"Being on this course has helped me a lot," Tumoli said.
Where before Ausage had to feed words to Tumoli to type emails or messages on the play groups' Facebook page, to promote events and initiatives, they could now share the computing part.
Graduates received a computer and could now access 12 months of technical support and subsidised internet.
"I got a laptop so I can carry it round, and everyone can see that I know how to use a computer," Tumoli said.
Families paid a total of $50 for the service.
The Computers in Homes programme operated throughout New Zealand and over 1500 families graduated every year.
Tumoli said her children were happy she had been on the course, because she no longer had to ask them for help.
In Christchurch, some 150 families graduated in the last year, with the help of funding by the Ministry of Education.
Senior teacher Mamaitaloa Sagapolutele said Computers in Homes had given an opportunity for Pasifika parents to feel good about new learning, especially for their children.