Five Edinburgh-based UK military veterans have been presented with new iPads to help them improve their digital skills and connect with friends and family following the extended period of isolation due to Covid-19 restrictions.  

The veterans, who all reside at Whitefoord House, a home run by Scottish Veterans Residences, received the devices after the charity successfully applied on their behalf for ConnectingScotland’s Older & Disabled People Award.

The ConnectingScotland programme, a Scottish Government initiative run by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), aims to reduce digital exclusion which affects an estimated 800,000 people across Scotland.  

Along with their new, wifi-enabled iPads, the veterans were also given weekly learning sessions to help them become more adept at using their devices. They have now been putting their newly acquired digital skills to the fore, accessing news sites and podcasts and connecting with friends and family via apps such as FaceTime.  

Susie Hamilton, Head of External Relations at SVR said: “Our Whitefoord House veterans are delighted with their iPads and are really benefitting from their newly developed digital skills. The training sessions were a great forum for interaction between our residents which have enabled them to connect with friends, family and a wider network online. We are grateful to ConnectingScotland for this generous donation which is proving transformative to individuals who’ve been adversely impacted by Covid-19 lockdown measures.”