Have you heard of digital poverty?

In 2023, technology is not only all around us, it is a core part of how we function as a society in the UK. Whether it’s accessing education, the social security system, job opportunities or cheaper gas and electricity, an inability to interact with the online world causes all sorts of issues and contributes to a wider poverty issue.

So what can be done about it?

Across the country, charitable groups are looking at what can be done to reduce digital exclusion. Local charity ‘The Hope Foundation‘ works across Teesside providing opportunities access to technology, as well as learning, careers advice, volunteering opportunities and support. Naturally, it is a charity that our Three13 Training and Enterprise charity works alongside. The Hope Foundation has created ‘Furbd IT’ – a partnership that is working to reduce digital poverty. The idea is simple – they take old, unwanted IT equipment and refurbish it and then work to ensure that refurbished items get to those who are most in need.

Sounds great, so how can we help?

We have recently registered Three13 and The Oakwood Centre as a ‘drop off’ point for donating your old or unwanted IT equipment. This means that you can register it at FurbdIT.org.uk and then simply drop it off to our Oakwood Reception – it saves you trying to find a suitable place for disposing of it, and saves it sitting under your bed until you decide what to do with it! Simply register then drop it in to send it on its way to helping somebody!

What do they accept?

Phones, laptops, desktops, tablets – it doesn’t matter if they are working or not, the team will refurbish or even strip out useful parts.

Does it work?

Yes! Check out their Facebook page for some beautiful stories of donated laptops, tablets and smart phones finding their way to children who need to access school work, women who are escaping abusive relationships, asylum seekers and many more! This week we have applied for laptops for our Three13 learners to help them as they move on from their time with us and into work.