Stepping UP – the Rotorua experience

Transcript of video

Anne Riddle, from Rotorua District Library, talks about her experiences with Stepping UP and 20/20

Good morning, this is Anne from Rotorua Library on a cold winter’s day, and today we’re going to be talking about Stepping UP.

Why did we get started with Stepping UP?

We’ve been running Stepping UP here at the library for about two years now; and why did we get started? I guess because we had lots of enquiries from members of the public for help with things.

They needed help filling out forms, applying for jobs – doing a lot of things that we who work with computers all the time take for granted. So there was an identified need out there. I guess that was the main reason we really started seriously looking at Stepping UP, in fact, that our people needed a little help.

I had butterflies in my stomach…

So the starting out with Stepping UP – I must admit to having a few butterflies in my stomach, but we were incredibly lucky. Some Skype calls with Sue Kini from the 20/20 Foundation (Trust) really really helped. She literally conducted an on-line Stepping UP programme where she stepped us through what we had to do. It was amazing!

Help and contacts

And from that day to this we’ve had help, pretty much consistently. Sue’s always there when there’s a question to be asked. We’ve also – I’ve also had contact with people from other libraries who are considering running the programmes, and just this contact between libraries has been invaluable for myself and for the others.

Benefits to the community?

The benefits to the community? Well, actually they’ve been enormous. We’ve had a wide, wide range of people come to the programmes: we’ve had young people who may have fallen through the cracks at school; we’ve had older people who need a bit of confidence building; we’ve had people who have some computer skills but just want to take them to the next level; we’ve had people who absolutely have no computer skills whatsoever, and we start off even before the Stepping UP classes just teaching them how to use a mouse, doing some basic mouse exercises.

Small friendly classes

So the people who love… who come to the classes love the almost individual attention. The classes are run on a ratio of about one staff member to maybe two or three members of the public. So they are getting special attention, they don’t have that awful, awful feeling of sitting in a large classroom and being too scared to answer a question.

We’re now taking our Stepping UP classes out into the community. We do have a mobile learning centre, so we’re going out, we’re helping people in the community.

How have we found running these modules?

So how have we found running these modules? They are great – they are fantastic. They are really at that level that is just getting people up off the ground, and building their confidence.

The next level

We’ve been aware for some time that there is a need to take classes on the next level, and with that in mind, we have just as a library subscribed to Lynda.com. ¬†So we’re looking at using Lynda to take up our Stepping UP classes up to the next level.

Go for it!

So if anyone is considering whether they should run Stepping UP classes at their library, my recommendation would be to go for it!

Thank you.