In April 2020, with the national lockdown in place and schools closed for the first time in UK history, parents across the country were navigating how to keep their children educated and their families stimulated, entertained and connected. This was even more challenging for families who did not have access to a computer at home.
Power to Connect was set up as a partnership between Wandsworth Council and Battersea Power Station (BPS) to raise awareness of digital exclusion and to support local families across Wandsworth. Incorporated as an independent Community Interest Company in May 2020, Power to Connect has collected, updated and delivered laptops, tablets and desktop computers to schools and community organisations in Wandsworth, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
Since our launch, Power to Connect has delivered over 1,265 devices to 72 Wandsworth Schools for local families to keep. In addition, Wandsworth Council distributed £10,000 worth of data top up vouchers and wifi dongles to families, donated by the BPS Foundation. In September 2020, Power to Connect was awarded the Community Impact Award at the Tech4Good Awards by AbilityNet, sponsored by BT.
How you Can HELP
BECOME A POWER TO CONNECT KEY SUPPORTER
Power to Connect is asking local businesses to get involved in its work helping local families get online.
Without the generous support from our current Key Supporters none of our achievements would have been possible. We are now working at growing our network of Key Supporters and asking organisations to pledge an annual contribution of devices or money so work can continue in the community.
As we approach 2 years of community working tackling digital poverty in Wandsworth we are holding a celebratory event, hosted by the Mayor of Wandsworth, where we would like to invite all those that have made our work possible and those that are interested in supporting us in the future.
The event will be held in the evening of the 29th March 2022 and you can register for it here
OUR STORY SO FAR
Laptop & tablet collection drive
HAVE YOU GOT A SPARE LAPTOP, TABLET OR DESKTOP?
If you own an unused device please donate it to Power to Connect for a child or young person without one.
Devices must be:
- fully working
- no more than 8 years old. and
- have a working charger.
Our IT expert volunteers will immediately render any data in on the device inaccessible before refurbishing it ‘as new’ for its new owner.
Please fill in the Google form below to donate your device. Once the donation form has been completed, our team will be in touch with information on how and where to safely leave your device following the Government’s social distancing guidelines.
I CAn volunteer my time
This project is being run by volunteers without whom we would not be able to help local families experiencing digital exclusion. We operate out of at our community hub in Battersea on Tuesday mornings (10am – 1pm). We also run digital skills sessions on Thursday mornings for parents and children (10am-1pm). We are looking for:
Digital Mentors – who can support us on Thursday Mornings with the skills sessions.
IT specialists – who can donate their time to repurpose the donated computers
Transport Volunteers – volunteers can have a car, who can safely collect donated devices and transport devices to schools and community organisations
Admin Support + Logistics – support with coordinating donations and school deliveries
Social Media – support with creating content for our website and social media channels. If you would like to volunteer, please fill in the Google form below and our team will be in touch. Please note, we can only bring together a small group of volunteers at our community hub, due to Social Distancing guidelines.
We rely on our team to support our pioneering work at Power to Connect in many ways, if you’re interested in opportunities with us please find out what is avaliable on our opportunities page!
If you can donate a small amount of your time to help with this project either by putting your IT skills to good use or by helping to transport laptop and tablet donations, please fill in the form below. We are also looking for Digital Mentors, Admin and Social Media support.
If you have a working laptop, desktop or tablet that you would be willing to donate to a local family, please fill in the form below.
If you’d like to know more about donating and the scheme itself, please read through our Frequently Asked Questions in the link below.
If you’re an organisation or business and would like to help, you can view more information about becoming a long-term partner in the link below.
HOW TO APPLY
HOW WE ALLOCATE DEVICES
Power to Connect allocates devices directly through schools and community organisations in Wandsworth. Power to Connect does not decide who receives what – this is managed by the schools in collaboration with Wandsworth Council and Wandsworth Children’s Services, to ensure that devices are going to the families that need them.
Power to Connect does not accept direct requests for devices from families. If your child needs a laptop and they attend a school in Wandsworth, please talk to your child’s school, who will be able to request a device on your behalf.
If you are a community organisation in Wandsworth and need devices for your participants, please contact Wandsworth Children’s Services to make a request. Requests will be considered on a case by case basis but the Council cannot guarantee that every request will be able to be honoured. For Special Education Needs enquiries please contact Wandsworth Information Advice and Support Service who will arrange an application to Power to Connect.
Power To Connect is nothing without the organisations, people and the board who help steer the organisation in the right direction. Click below to learn about the board who support us. At the same time, explore the map to see where we have supported.