Retiree named as one of Qld's inspiring digital champs
THE State Government has named 18 inspirational Queenslanders as Advance Queensland Community Digital Champions in recognition of their contribution to improving digital inclusion across the state.
Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch praised the champions for their role as advocates of digital technologies, leading the way in their local communities.
"The digital world is an integral part of Queensland's economic future and social fabric, one that needs to be embraced by every Queenslander, no matter where they live," Ms Enoch said.
"A prosperous Queensland needs a vibrant and active digital community, so it's essential that all of our citizens have the confidence and skills to be a part of this community, and that is what the Community Digital Champions program is all about,"she said. "The program provides an opportunity for positive community digital role models to share inspirational stories and experiences with others in their local community and encourage online participation.
"Each digital champion will reach into their community to improve the digital literacy, inclusion and adoption of more Queensland businesses and citizens."
One of the champions, James Walker, is a farmer and entrepreneur in Longreach who uses social media and digital technologies to generate solutions to combat rural problems.
"Through digital and disruptive innovation we can create new possibilities quickly in global agriculture," Mr Walker said. "I have been collaborating with farmers, business, the Department of Agriculture and Meat and Livestock Australia to develop a digital predictive tool to empower farmers to understand their financial situation and make more informed, data-driven decisions," he said.
Steve Dixon, a retiree and volunteer from Sherwood, is helping to close the digital divide by teaching older Queensland citizens how to use digital technologies and participate online.
"Seniors often feel excluded from technology, so it's important that we mentor and tutor them. Once seniors join the online world, digital technology often becomes an integral part of their daily lives," Mr Dixon said.
Ms Enoch said the Advance Queensland Community Digital Champions program was helping to enable Queensland to thrive in the global digital economy.
"We want Queenslanders to be among the most connected and digitally savvy in the world and the digital champions program plays an important role in achieving this," she said.
"The great work undertaken by the champions, on a voluntary basis in their communities, is so important, especially in the areas of disadvantaged Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people with disabilities, our senior citizens and Queenslanders in regional areas."
For details visit http://advance.qld.gov.au/innovation-movement/digital-champions.aspx