Cambridge supports ‘digitally excluded’ care leavers with tech donation

October 23, 2023

The Cambridge Building Society has donated 20 smartphones to help people supported by the Cambridge Care Leavers Local Offer pathway stay connected.

The scheme empowers care leavers to move into careers and higher education or gain independence.

Lead Officer for Care Leavers Local Offer, Joe Gilbert said: “Through no fault of their own, young people have become one of the most vulnerable groups in our society. As a community, we all have a part to play in ensuring that those in need are well equipped to take on the next stage of their lives.

“We are thankful for your donations and the smartphones have been incredibly well received. With your support we’ve been able to make a difference to those affected and provided a vital lifeline to so many.”

The donation of the smartphones was facilitated by Laptops4Learning, which repairs and refurbishes surplus tech from local businesses for reuse for social good, addressing digital inequality in the local community.

Laptops4Learning founder, Sue Gowling, said: “We set up Laptops4Learning at the start of the pandemic to get sustainable, affordable tech and donations out to those disadvantaged by digital exclusion.

“We are delighted to be able to help care leavers in the local community with the backing of local businesses like The Cambridge, while making their IT upgrade process sustainable.

“We continue to support a wide demographic of digital exclusion needs, with over 5,000 devices now delivered nationally, over 1,000 of which have been delivered for needs within Cambridgeshire.”

Head of IT at The Cambridge, Trevor Tannenbaum said: “We’re always looking to find new ways to help people and we’re pleased to be able to provide these devices. Every piece of tech that’s donated will make a difference to those on the other side of the digital divide.”

The mutual has also donated 15 monitors and 10 laptops to be reused for social good through Laptops4Learning and is preparing its next batch of devices for donation.

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Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce