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Meet Helen Bantcock

Helen Bantcock

Published on 13 October 2023 04:19 PM

Meet Helen Bantock in Digital

We interviewed Helen Bantock, our Digital Inclusion Officer on the Santander Project at Age Cymru Dyfed to learn about her Santander funded project helping over fifties live independently for longer in their homes by harnessing technology.

What’s your role at Age Cymru Dyfed?

I’m the Digital Inclusion Officer for the Santander Project. I help out on virtual reality headset events when needed and will be at Llanboidy Warm Hub in October on Tuesdays, plus I plan to set up weekly digital workshops in Whitland in November.

The role entails helping people gain access to technology, becoming more confident users if new, and being able to Internet bank online as the project is sponsored by Santander. I am the Carmarthenshire officer, although most places I cover are Whitland, St Clears and locally as there's so much demand in rural areas for help.

The project supports people in building confidence, showing them how technology can assist their day-to-day lives, Alexa for example can set reminders, makes calls, tell jokes and  play music, all of which assist with loneliness. For example, I helped one lady open and read an email from her son in New Zealand which had arrived last May and she read it in September. She was ecstatic to see pictures enclosed from her son. Her face was like a child getting the best Christmas gift ever, it was a delight to be part of this process.

The aim of the project is to ensure people have access to bank online and enjoy the services, plus have independence financially, with more banks closing and everything being online, this is key to keep up. Embracing technology and also seeing its fun side and uses is important. With patience and practise anyone can learn new skills. 

I've had many roles previously in corporate companies in IT, training mainly, along with a small stint in a nursery and running craft classes in the community for wellbeing.

How has your first 6 months been?

My first six months at Age Cymru Dyfed has been a total pleasure, I've learnt so much, thanks to my manager, team and clients. It's a rewarding role knowing we are helping in the modern world, while often being told stories of times gone by.