Local business leaders Gary Jordan and Martin Rigley are looking to businesses owners to help support local school children who are struggling to access learning due to the new school closures as part of the recent lockdown.
The campaign aims to bridge the digital divide by providing much needed IT resources to children and young people in the Mansfield and Ashfield area.
Although this is a new lockdown, they had already recognised the problems faced locally following a report addressing the growing digital divide – a problem which has only been highlighted and exacerbated under the COVID restrictions. The campaign began in earnest back in October 2020 and so far, they have delivered 80 laptops to local school children.
Now with the return to working and schooling from home, many families are having to share resources amongst their children to enable them to continue learning and some children are only able to access schoolwork through mobile devices. Whilst schools have been identifying parents with limited resources, there are only so many laptops to go around and more are needed.
No doubt parents are feeling the pressure to purchase expensive devices at a time when incomes may not be very secure or may have been reduced due to furlough schemes. In many instances, they just cannot afford to provide anything extra.
This is a concern as not only are our children losing out on valuable education time, they are then unable to catch up on any work that they may have missed during the first lockdown and this will only lead to them falling further behind.
The digital divide is not the result of lockdown, it is an issue that will continue even after the pandemic is over.
These young people are the next generation of our employees and also the economic future of our area. As business becomes more reliant on digital technology, the ICT skills of our staff need to be second nature and we can help make this happen.
There are a few ways you can help:
  • Donations of redundant IT equipment – Laptops, Desktops, Monitors, Keyboards etc Please email [email protected] to arrange collection.
  • Monetary donations can be made on the crowdfunding page here – Every amount, large or small, helps as this will be used to purchase any equipment or a techies time to complete data cleansing and software updates to provide user ready systems.
  • Share the campaign on your social media channels using the #WeMakeICTPossible and ask if your staff can help to spread the word.
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