Today we launched a new project to help 200 local families with limited or no internet access to get connected with free laptops and full fibre broadband.
“When lockdown began, learning moved online. Teachers set work online, created videos of lessons and emailed activities to parents. To access their learning children needed a device, a good quality internet connection and someone at home to help them. Within days we found that this was not always the case. Fearing the profound impact that Covid-19 would have on the educational achievement of our pupils, we sent home chromebooks, purchased dongles and provided support by phone. But this was only a short term solution. Working alongside local partners, we set up this digital inclusion project to provide eligible families with a great internet connection, a device and training, all for free. This is a long term solution to tackle the digital divide and minimise the impact of the pandemic on educational achievement.”
“Finding ways to address the digital divide in our communities has never been more important. Families that are unable to access the internet find themselves cut off from access to services, advice and information, contact with loved ones and in the context of the pandemic, crucial education resources for their children. I’m pleased that we are able to support this project which will make a genuine difference to hundreds of local families in our borough. Moving forward we will look to expand not only this scheme, but also other initiatives that make digital inclusion a priority. We recognise there is more work to be done to ensure every child is connected and has the right equipment to access effective tutoring and education.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic is having the most profound impact on the most disadvantaged in our community. Improving digital access and skills holds the potential to have a life-changing effect and we will continue working with partners to help more residents access essential online services with support and training from experienced volunteers and staff.”
“Having launched our East End Emergency Fund to support those in need during the health crisis with food and essentials, we quickly learnt many low income homes are without broadband and kit. Having information at our fingertips is something many of us take for granted and we would be lost without it, so I’m pleased the partnership can make this a reality for others too.”
“Community Fibre is on a mission to provide fast, affordable, and reliable Internet to everyone in London. Working closely with Tower Hamlets Council and Poplar HARCA we have already upgraded over 10,000 properties in the borough with 100% full fibre connectivity. Our mission to connect London’s communities drives us to upgrade thousands of properties each month. We are delighted to be working with our partners to support education for children, young people and their families with connectivity during this difficult time.”