Virgin Media O2 commits £400,000 to tech lending scheme

Tue, 26/03/2024 - 16:16
Virgin Media O2

Virgin Media O2 and environmental charity, Hubbub, are providing a digital boost for charities through its £400,000 device lending scheme. 

The Tech Lending Community scheme was established in 2022 to tackle digital exclusion and electronic waste by providing second-hand devices to people in need.

As part of a new round of funding, homelessness charities, Centrepoint and Thames Reach will receive more than 500 tablets and smartphones, which will be powered by free O2 mobile data from the National Databank.

The charities will distribute the devices via their services across the country.

In addition, Refuge, a charity which supports women and children who have experienced domestic abuse, and received 250 tablets from the initiative in 2022, will continue to receive funding and support to run their device lending scheme. 

The project is supported by Reconome which has sourced, wiped, and refurbished the second-hand devices.  

Since the launch of the Tech Lending Community scheme, more than 750 people have been loaned a tablet for up to six months at around 50 community centres, temporary accommodation, or refuge sites nationwide. 

Dana Haidan, Chief Sustainability Officer at Virgin Media O2, said: “We know that having data and devices can be a lifeline for people in need, enabling them to access essential websites, from applying for jobs, to accessing medical appointments, and to stay in touch with loved ones. 

“That’s why initiatives like The Tech Lending Community scheme and National Databank are vital in addressing digital exclusion and data poverty, and help to transform people’s lives in communities across the UK.”