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We’ve always known that there’s been a digital divide, with some having no access to affordable broadband & digital equipment, not being able to use the right equipment for their needs, skills or knowledge to use their devices or the ability to engage with organisations that could support them.

In recent months COVID has exacerbated this problem, with an increasing number of people working from home, less face to face contact and more online services and home-schooling.

The VCSE has responded and there has being a surge in organisations bidding for and distributing IT equipment, from laptops and tablets to phones, SIM cards and WI-FI hubs. These devices have provided families with the capacity to continue their child’s education, as well as making sure people aren’t isolated and have the means to contact friends and family.

As part of this work we have established the Digital Forum, alongside VCSE partners, to bring a co-ordinated approach to digital inclusion across the Borough. If you have a digital project, whether it is providing equipment, training then come and join us at our next forum.

Email heather.campbell@catalyststockton.org for more information about our forums.