Food delivery company Deliveroo has opened up access to free online learning courses to the families of its Irish delivery staff.

Until now, the Rider Academy courses on the Open Classrooms platform were only available to the riders themselves.

However, the firm has now decided to widen the availability of the online learning facility to their families while they are confined to their homes due to the Covid-19 crisis.

"With more riders' families inside at home during this period, we wanted to enable them to have the option of online learning," said Michael Healy, General Manager of Deliveroo Ireland.

"We know that many of our riders ride with us to support a long-term ambition, and online learning is a great way to pick up new skills, while still being able to ride with Deliveroo when and where they want. While everyone is likely to have some more downtime at home we want to make sure we support both riders and their loved ones as much as we can." 

The courses cover a variety of topics including graphic design, marketing, entrepreneurship, coding, software development, project management and developing soft skills.

The number of courses available has also been increased from 300 to 700 and those who complete them will receive a Certificate of Completion.

The duration of the courses vary from an hour to several hours and they can be accessed by partners and children over the age of 16.

Currently Deliveroo has 1,000 self-employed riders serving over 1,200 restaurants across Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway.