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Keeping you connected

As a result of COVID-19, the whole world is having to find different ways to keep in touch without meeting face to faceAt Local Trust, our aim is to get every Big Local partnership online and connecting with each other so they can continue to work on community projects and support local residents. 

What support is on offer?

We are trying to adapt to as efficiently as possible so we can continue to support Big Local areas, at this unusual time our offer of support is likely to change and develop as we understand the needs of Big Local partnerships, currently we are offering: 

Support with online video conference software Zoom

Zoom is a really useful online tool for holding meetings and even events while face-to-face meet-ups aren’t possible. One of the best things about Zoom is that it’s easy to use and you don’t even need internet access to use it  – you can call into meetings using a phone line! 

1)  Free premium license for every Big local area 

To support Big Local partnerships with using Zoom, Local Trust is offering every Big Local area a free premium account. A premium account allows you to hold online meetings with up to 100 participants and access to other useful functions. If your partnership would like a free premium Zoom account for the duration of the outbreak, please email  

2) Weekly Zoom training events 

To help familiarise you and your area with Zoom, we are holding ‘Getting to know Zoom’ training sessions. These are held online  and cover everything you need to know to use Zoom with confidence and ease.  You can find out more information about these sessions on our events page.  

3) 1:1 check in with a Local Trust Digital Champion 

We are offering one-to-one support to help people get started on Zoom and build confidence to host their own meetings and events. Email us at with your name and Big Local area to book a slot for one-to-one training.  

4) Guidance 
Zoom offer really brilliant free tutorials on how to use their tools – here is a selection of some of them.  We will be updating this guidance regularly to reflect Big Local needs, such as ‘how to stay safe on Zoom’ and ‘how to manage a shared Zoom account’.  We also have a group ‘Using Zoom’ group on Workplace, where people are asking for and offering help and resources. If you would like to join workplace, please email 

Coming soon!

We are developing further sessions that will help you to facilitate meetings or events online, and to demonstrate how you can use Zoom (or similar platforms) to carry out some of your regular activities. If your Big Local area has had some success or learning from holding activities online, maybe you’ve hosted a virtual knit & natter or held your youth club online, let us know – so we can share with other areas. Get in touch at 

Upcoming projects

Guidance and advice around supporting people who do not have access to the internet or a suitable device 

Since the country went into lockdown, the campaign group Operation Wifi have been highlighting the fact that 2.73 million people are completely offline because of low income and 14.2 million people can’t afford regular internet access. We know that access to devices and wifi is a big issue for many Big Local areas, and some partnerships have already come up with strategies to address this issue. We want to take these local solutions and broaden them out to other Big Local areas so that more people around the country can get connected – we will be looking out for these projects and also let us know about any happening in your area:

Increasing digital skills in Big Local areas 

For many people, this outbreak will mean having to learn how to get online to sustain community activity. We are hoping to get Big Local residents trained in online tools so that they can support other residents in their area. In order to do this, we are aiming to work with external partners who can offer Big Local areas digital training or direct support so that local support is available to everyone wanting to get online.