Lloyds Digital Champion Matt helps IT Junction to prosper

Good Things Foundation has been working with Lloyds Banking Group to train their staff as Digital Champions and give them the opportunity to volunteer at local Online Centres. Group Telephony Manager Matt Shimmans is one Digital Champion who’s been making a real difference in his community.

In partnership, Good Things Foundation and Lloyds Banking Group have developed a training course supporting Lloyds staff to become Digital Champions, so champions can find opportunities within the Online Centres Network, volunteering at centres up and down the country to teach people digital skills.

Matt Shimmans is one such Digital Champion who’s taken his volunteering to the next level.

Matt explains: “I became a Digital Champion after I saw the sign-up on our intranet. I was very keen to use the volunteer hours the Group allows us and the scheme offered a great way of doing so within my own community.”

Matt started volunteering at local Online Centre IT Junction in Adur, where people from the local area can go to learn basic digital skills, such as emailing, and important life skills, such as looking for work.

Not long after Matt started, the main volunteer at IT Junction moved on to full-time employment and Matt jumped at the opportunity to take on the role.

He says: “I’m now the primary contact for Leigh-Anna Barber, who manages the IT Junction Online Centre as part of the Communities and Wellbeing Team at Adur and Worthing Council. It’s extremely rewarding and it gives a sense of appreciation that I’m lucky to have grown up in a digital world. Before this, I really took that knowledge for granted.


“I’m a strong advocate for helping the local community and the role this scheme can play to support this. As a line manager, I’m very keen to be a role model for my team and promote the benefits of this opportunity to them. I’m actively recommending the Digital Champion course and the volunteering opportunities as often as I can.”

Leigh-Anna Barber from Adur and Worthing District Council says: “Matt joined us as a Digital Champion five months ago. He chose to help out in our Adur branches that are in deprived 'hard to reach' areas. This is a particularly challenging area to work in as although there is a great need, clients are very frightened to attend our sessions.

“Clients have responded so positively to his approach as he inspires confidence. Our volunteers look up to him and are feeling more confident in their roles due to his communication skills. He has helped ease my workload by looking at new opportunities and going 'above and beyond' to help promote the service not only with outside partners but with Lloyds as well.

“I personally am very grateful to have him as a lead and look forward to what the future holds with him supporting us.”