Digital Donation Day to take place to drive urgent support for disadvantaged young people

Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) have teamed up with the Manchester Evening News and Business in the Community (BITC) to hold a Digital Donation Day on Friday 22nd January. The Donation day will raise awareness of and encourage businesses and individuals to support the Greater Manchester Technology Fund, which was revived last week by the Mayor of Greater Manchester. 

An image of a young person working on a laptop with the text Digital Donation Day written over the top

The Greater Manchester Technology Fund provides an emergency response to help support digitally- excluded young people with the technology and connectivity needed to continue their learning at home while schools and colleges remain closed. 

The GM Tech Fund aims to raise £300,000 to help 1,000 digitally excluded young people across Greater Manchester, through the donation of funds, new tech data packages and used device donations.

Organisations that have already pledged to support the Greater Manchester Tech Fund include Arup, Auto Trader, ANS group and Boohoo.

Digital exclusion and the importance of helping young people to stay connected was a major focus of Greater Manchester’s Young Person’s Guarantee. During a recent consultation, young people themselves shared their anxieties over keeping connected digitally, ranging from concerns over accessing resources for schoolwork, keeping in touch with their peers or the ability to be connected to future employers.

Diane Modahl, Chair of Greater Manchester’s Youth Task Force and the lead for this drive to businesses to help disadvantaged young people said: “Digital exclusion was a major focus of Greater Manchester’s Young Person’s Guarantee. Young people themselves told us about their anxieties over keeping connected digitally, ranging from concerns over accessing resources for schoolwork, keeping in touch with their school friends or the ability to be connected to future employers. Those young people in our city-region who do not have easy access to these opportunities face being marginalised and at a disadvantage to their peers. 

“Many organisations in Greater Manchester have come forward to offer their help with commitments for the Young Person’s Guarantee. I now extend my appeal to businesses across Greater Manchester to come forward again and ensure our city-region’s young people have the tools they need to achieve their aspirations.”

Greater Manchester businesses are being asked to support the fund to address digital and social exclusion in Greater Manchester and help support young people to thrive by pledging to:

  • Make a financial donation to enable us to purchase devices and data connectivity packages 
  • Donate new devices particularly laptops, Chromebooks and iPads 
  • Donate data packages, portable hotspots, dongles and other connectivity devices
  • Donate pre-loved working devices under 8 years old which will be repurposed by Business in the Community to support a young person in schools or colleges in GM.

BITC’s National Business Response Network connects national and local community groups, small businesses, local authorities and charities with businesses and brands who can offer support. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, this network has made almost 4,000 matches and helped over 500,000 people get the aid, technology, food and supplies they need.

 

View the Manchester Evening News Live blog

Find out how to support the fund (internal link)


Article Published: 21/01/2021 13:27 PM