14/05/2003

Derry council undertakes resident IT initiative

The Local Strategy Partnership (LSP) for Derry City Council Area has undertaken one of the most ambitious Northern Ireland council-wide studies on the future IT needs of its residents.

The project aims to identify the most effective and innovative approaches to connecting citizens, homes, businesses and communities within the Derry City Council area to the ‘e-world’.

The project is funded under the Peace and Reconciliation Programme for Northern Ireland and the Border Counties and also received funding from ERNACT through Derry City Council.

Phase two of this project involved extensive consultation with schools, local residents, businesses and various groups at a recently held one-day workshop.

Commenting on the initiative, Des Rainey, Co-chairperson said: “This is a valuable project for every sector and resident within Derry City Council. We have sought views and opinions on the availability and quality of IT training, the availability of IT equipment, and have consulted widely on what residents, businesses and various groups consider to be missing. We are currently planning a range of IT based pilot projects which respond to the actual needs identified locally.”

The ongoing involvement of businesses, residents and local community and voluntary groups in shaping an ICT infrastructure that responds to actual need reflects the LSP’s ethos and strategy for integrated planning in the District Council Area.

The project, which has sought the views of young and old, businesses, education providers and a range of local groups, now expects to inform the design of pilot projects that will commence during the summer and autumn months this year.

(MB)

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