International Aid Network

Get Online Week 2012


Get Online Week 2012 in Serbia was successfully completed! More than 10.000 citizens took part in the Get Online Week through various activities organized by the partners of the campaign – over 70 schools, libraries and civil society organizations.

Retrieve a report for Get Online week 2012. , Serbia

The European Get Online Week took place from 26. to 30. March , for the third consecutive year, with the aim of introducing the world of information technologies to 200.000  people who had never used computers before  and helping them acquire e-skills.

Teaching school children about internet safety, organizing training for fellow teachers, organizing open classes of Informatics for grandmas and grandpas, having older elementary school students help the first graders master the use of Internet  are just some of the many activities organized in Subotica, Kikinda, Tovariševo, Užice, Babušnica, Belgrade, Dimitrovgrad, Niš, Aleksinac, Kragujevac and  30 other places in Serbia. Campaign partners, numerous schools, libraries, NGOs and other public institutions and organizations have, through a range of activities, encouraged their users to opt for the smart, confident and safe use of everything that Internet has to offer.  Pictures, stories and short video clips from some of the participating schools can be viewed here.

Over the course of the campaign IAN Telecentre provided free ECDL exams for obtaining the European computer driving license. A total of 25 people passed 97 exams, and 17 of them got free ECDL indexes thanks to JISI.

brojackrajnjiThe main symbols of this year`s campaign were the Counter and test e-Virtuoso. The counter registered all those who clicked on the counter icon during the Online week and answered a couple of questions. In Serbia the number of clicks reached   10.562, which ranked us fifth in Europe based on the number of participants! With the help of e-Virtuoso the youngsters were able to have their IT skills tested, and at the same time they were being informed of the importance of mastering ICT skills in business environment.

In Serbia, the citizens who are online are a minority. This particular minority, unlike so many other “minority groups” in any society, is in fact in a more favorable position compared to the majority of citizens. They have better access to information and resources, they use information technologies for the sake of socializing and communicating with friends and family who live far away, they save time and money by paying their bills online or finding better deals online.

skillage2012Digital divide does exist, and it is becoming even harder to bridge it. In Europe there are still gender disparities in access to information technologies and e-skills, and the use of IT is also less prevalent among groups who have already been socially marginalized for reasons other than gender. The elderly are amongst the most digitally excluded groups, followed closely by residents of rural areas and the poorest members of society.

Eurostat (EU statistics agency) data highlights lack of progress in bridging the digital divide at the European level. In the period 2006-2010 the digital inclusion of the population grew by 5% each year, whereas in2011. it went up only by 3%, from 65% to 68%. So it seems that the work ahead of us is proving to be even more challenging, since the most vulnerable groups in society are yet to be reached. Therefore, it is now of the utmost importance to get as many organizations involved as possible, as well as to obtain political support for implementation of digital literacy.

In Serbia, as in rest of Europe, the growth in the number of computer and Internet users has been extremely slow in the last couple of years,  the annual growth is a mere  1-3%. For example, the number of Internet users in Serbia in 2011, went up by a mere 1%, compared to the previous year. This means that there is still 55% or nearly 4 million citizens in Serbia who have never surfed the worldwide network.

The campaign was organized by the European Network of Telecentres, and the role of the national coordinator was taken on by IAN International Aid Network. The campaign was supported and officially launched in Brussels by  Neelie Kroes the vice-president of the European Commission and European Commissioner for Digital Agenda.

Each of us, still unfortunately belonging to a minority in Serbia, who today has the “privilege” to be reading this text online, can become the promoter of digital literacy. Let’s dedicate some time to helping our parents, friends and fellow citizens make the first step towards digital inclusion and towards improving the quality of their day-to-day life.  Help the minority become a  majority!

IAN Telecentar
Djure Danicica 5 Street
11000 Belgrade, Serbia

tel. +38111 3229 732