Supporting School Children with Headphones!
We began delivering refurbished internet enabled devices, such as laptops and smartphones in March 2020, as the pandemic began to take hold. Many of our beneficiaries were working and studying remotely, often in households with multiple residents. Through talking with our recipients and learning more about the struggles they face, it became clear that headphones would make a huge difference, providing a quiet space to work and engage in online activities.
The L&Q Community Legacy Fund with Travis Perkins kindly supported us with funds to purchase 150 headphones for beneficiaries in order for them to carry out school work and other online activities. We delivered 50 sets to users who have already received device donations from us, but who had struggled due to noise and space issues. The remaining 100 were to be delivered alongside laptops and desktops to future recipients identified by community led organisations.
27 of these devices were allocated directly to local schools and children’s support services.
James, a deputy headteacher at a south London school explained the difference they have made,
“We are a school in a London borough with low income families and large families that are in social housing. These are families that would not normally be able to afford tech like this to help their children.
They are able to use the noise cancelling technology to work on their homework without the constant distraction and disturbance from small housing with a large number of people living there. This will directly impact on their learning and ability to progress while at home.
You made their year with your generosity.”
Over the past 24 months, children’s education has been hugely disrupted. These headphones have helped students to catch up with their work and ensure they get the most out of their education.
James also said,
“In school we are able to use the headphones as part of our technology programme that enables children who would not normally have the chance to experience and learn how to use technology that they may come across in future life. We have a range of lessons from virtual reality trips to countries and landmarks that children would not be able to afford to go all the way to using school technology to make music and explore beat making.”
These devices highlight that digital inclusion is not just about one device, or one interaction. There are many elements that feed into becoming digital inclusion, from confidence, to accessibility and privacy. Community focused projects are vital if we are to build a long term sustainable end to digital poverty.