Voluntary groups can apply for part of £120,000 digital funding

21 May 2021

Written by: Lambeth Council

Digital Lambeth - News and announcements - Voluntary and community sector

Lambeth residents and businesses have helped raise over £120,000 in a crowdfunded campaign to get more young people online – with voluntary groups now invited to apply for the grants.

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Voluntary groups can apply for part of £120,000 digital funding

Earlier this year Lambeth Council launched the ‘End the Digital Divide’ crowdfunder in a bid to provide thousands of school-age young people access to laptops, broadband and internet-enabled devices.

Private donations from residents raised £45,000 and were match-funded by the charity Impact on Urban Health.

There were also substantial donations from the Walcott Foundation and other Lambeth-based organisations with the total raised reaching £120,000.

The appeal was created by Lambeth’s Digital Inclusion Fund in a response to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on young people who cannot access online learning resources.

Eligible voluntary sector groups can now apply for part of the £120,000 raised by the appeal. To check if your group is eligible, check the guide on our website.

Funding applications open on Friday May 21 and close on Friday June 4 at 5pm and all grant requests will be reviewed by an awards panel.

Applications will initially open for all Voluntary and Community Sector organisations with up to £5,000 available for each group – higher awards may be agreed in exceptional circumstances.

A separate process for schools to apply to the fund will be announced in the coming weeks.

To make an application please complete this online form.

Lambeth Council launched the Digital Inclusion Fund with an initial £200,000 investment in Autumn 2020 to support people of all ages who face digital exclusion.

A survey of Lambeth schools estimated there were more than 8,500 pupils in the borough who lacked sufficient access to broadband enabled computers, laptops, tablets during the first Covid-19 lockdown last year.

The latest appeal was a direct response to the third lockdown and creating a level playing field for all pupils to be able to learn using online resources. More than 570 private individuals contributed to the appeal during March and April.

Cllr Edward Davie, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: “We are all delighted with the response to the crowdfunder that will help improve the life chances of many of our young people in Lambeth.

“The pandemic has exposed just how wide the divide is between those who can access online learning and those who cannot.

“We hope that by opening up funding applications to local groups, we can begin addressing this digital inequality by making e-learning and online resources accessible for everyone.”