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Using Zoom for the first time

WhatsApp, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, Zoom – it’s safe to say video calling platforms are now the new ‘face to face’ normal for keeping in touch with friends, family and support networks. But, for those who don’t have the confidence or support to start using such technology, it can be a daunting task to begin to tackle.

Angela is 75 years-old and was an active member and participant to various groups; from her monthly Stoma Support Group, to the local Carers Council. Like so many others, these networks all moved to online to keep its visitors safe during the outbreak of COVID-19.

“I’d um and ar about registering for the support session. Having been in lockdown for so long, I thought this might help give me the confidence to join a group meeting if I wanted to.”

Regularly receiving invites to attend the virtual meetings to keep connected with these groups, Angela told us she had struggled with taking the next step: “I could never join them because I just didn’t know how to, having tried several times, I’d get myself into a terrible pickle over it. So I gathered it wasn’t meant to be.” 

That was until she heard about a local ‘Learn how to use the online platform, Zoom’ session being held by NHS Nottinghamshire and Nottingham Clinical Commissioning Group and the Digital and Social Inclusion Workstream. The session was aimed at supporting beginners to learn the basics such as muting the microphone, switching on the video camera, raising a hand and using the chat box.

The Digital Support Line was there every step of the way; helping participants to download the Zoom app on their laptop or tablet device, to talking individuals through the joining process.

Angela was one of the participants to give the telephone line a call beforehand; she said: “Before the session I was feeling apprehensive, I wanted to make sure I got into the call okay.” Whilst Angela successfully joined the Zoom call and learnt about its features, she wanted to get a little more advice about some of the functions.

We supported Angela through a one-to-one session, guiding her through what each feature was and how to use it until she felt confident: “You’ve been really helpful and given me so many hints and tips I must remember, like how to move the mouse to get the toolbar! I felt totally reassured and wasn’t made to feel silly – talking though each bit gave me the confidence to do it.”

With her newfound confidence and aided by the ‘Learn how to use the online platform, Zoom’ hand out, Angela’s now looking forwarding to joining her Stoma Support Meeting in the next few weeks.

Angela (left) and Rosie Atkins (right) from the Digital and Social Inclusion Workstream.

“My one-to-one Zoom session was so helpful – icing on the cake!”

If you’re looking for support to stay connected, why not give the support line a call on 0115 883 8873. We’re open Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm.

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