Northwest Computer Literacy Instruction Corps was established in 2009 and had about 7 volunteers in 2014.
The focus is on the basics, the skills and knowledge necessary to use a computer and the Internet independently. The goal is to teach customers what they see in a software program, in email or on a web site; how to use the tools and how to problem solve. All classes are beginner-level and emphasize step-by-step learning, repetition and practice. One volunteer describes his role in the community as “preparing people to participate in the local economy.”
Many volunteers say their reason for volunteering is to keep their skills fresh and to “give back” to the community. When asked why they stay, “seeing learning in action” and “seeing the ‘light bulb’ come on when a customer understands how to do something” are the most common responses. Volunteers also share in a customer’s success. “It’s amazing to watch a customer who was nervous and unsure one week, give a PowerPoint presentation with confidence and courage a week later.”