Free courses give mums in Leeds the chance to brush up on digital skills

Dr Sue Black, founder of #techmums.
Dr Sue Black, founder of #techmums.

A new scheme is being launched in Leeds that aims to ensure local mums can tap into the opportunities offered by the city’s booming digital economy.

The scheme will see free digital skills courses running in Armley, Seacroft and Beeston thanks to a link-up between Leeds City Council and the national #techmums company.

Leeds is the first city outside of London to host the 10-week #techmumsClubs courses, which cover subjects including online safety, social media and basic coding.

And council bosses are hoping the classes – part of a wider programme called 100% Digital Leeds – will open doors to jobs and further education for the women taking them.

Coun James Lewis, the local authority’s executive member for resources and sustainability, said: “We are delighted that Leeds will be the first city outside of London to host a #techmumsClubs programme.

“Through our wide-ranging 100% Digital Leeds initiative, we want to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to learn new tech skills to improve their day-to-day use of technology and support new work and career ambitions, and this new club for mums is a great addition to our overall programme.”

The #techmums company was founded by Dr Sue Black, who at the age of 25 was a single mother with few formal qualifications living in a domestic violence refuge.

Her life changed when she enrolled on a university access course which led to a computer studies degree and, ultimately, a 20-year academic career.

Dr Black said: “Our courses help women harness the potential in their own lives.”

The Leeds classes are running at Strawberry Lane Community Centre in Armley, Deacon House in Seacroft and the Dewsbury Road Community Hub.

For further information, e-mail acls@leeds.gov.uk or ring Sophie Cockrell on 0113 378 7002.