When schools were forced to close to the majority of their pupils due to the pandemic last year and teaching moved on-line, many children and young people in our borough had no access to remote learning and education because they didn't have a laptop or other device at home. Despite the best efforts of their schools and teachers, their education was affected as they were unable to access teaching and resources on-line.

In response, Haringey Giving partnered with Haringey Council to open the Haringey Digital Divide Appeal. Its aim is to support children and young people in the borough who do not have access to laptops, WiFi and other technological support.

Since its inception in December, the Appeal has raised over £41,000 on-line. This includes a donation from the Orp Foundation to support engagement with corporates around digital exclusion and/or to distribute as grants.

A considerable amount has also been donated to the Appeal as in-kind support. The campaign captured the attention of organisations including Raspberry Pi and The Bloomfield Trust, who subsequently joined as partners in the campaign. Together they provided £150K of in-kind support, including 1,000 devices. These have been distributed to pupils at 10 schools and colleges across the borough, enabling them to access and continue their education from home.  

  

Haringey Council contributed £250K too and has been able to distribute a further 1,019 devices to schools through the COVID-19 Hardship Fund.

Local company Techrelate, has also come on board to offer in-kind technical support to recipients of devices, free IT security advice to local community groups, and to repurpose computers donated by businesses.

A donation of £10,000 has been gratefully received to help support our efforts to end digital exclusion in Haringey.

To date, we've been able to fund the following projects directly through the Fund:

Causeway Irish Housing Association - £2,500 (as part of a larger grant of £4,974)

To purchase 6 laptops and provide wifi connectivity and bill subsidy for young people leaving care, including unaccompanied asylum seeking children. This has enabled them to continue their studies or search for employment as well as help to combat social isolation.

St Francis at The Engine Room - £2,604 (as part of a larger grant of £9,000)

To purchase 6 laptops, data and dongles for local young people to access. These are to support them with their at home learning and in preparing their CVs to apply for employment over the summer.

The Willow Primary School and Broadwaters’ Children’s Centre - £1,200

To purchase 30 wifi dongles for children aged 6-11, experiencing digital exclusion. This helped prevent them falling behind in their studies and reduced their social isolation during the lockdown period.

In addition, through our Together We Can COVID-19 programme, we’ve granted:

Risley Avenue Primary School - £10,000

For 50 laptops for pupils that do not have access to an online device.

  

In total 2,081 devices and 42 dongles have been distributed through the partnership between Haringey Giving, Haringey Council, Raspberry Pi and The Bloomfield Trust. 

So many households continue to be without a laptop or internet access however, at a time when society is ever more reliant on digital connectivity. Without online access, it is very difficult for children and young people to study at home and achieve their full potential.

The funds raised through the Haringey Digital Divide Appeal that have not yet been allocated will be used to address ongoing digital inequity within the borough. 

Part of these funds will be distributed as grants, through the Haringey Digital Divide Fund, to organisations working with children and young people, where a need for digital equipment and connectivity remains. Organisations can apply to the Haringey Digital Divide Fund for digital devices, internet access and training and support to increase digital skills. The Haringey Digital Divide Fund is open for applications until Monday 9th August at 10am. Please find more information on the Fund and how to apply here.

Digital exclusion is a significant issue with our borough, impacting considerably on individual’s education, learning, access to employment, sense of isolation and mental health. It is an inequality that we are committed to addressing over the long-term. Your generous support to this Fund has enabled us to begin this journey.

If you would like to help us support more children and young people and reach our £50K target

Donate to the Haringey Digital Divide Appeal