Wed, 17 Feb 2021
More than half of Greenham Trust's £500,000 target for the Laptops for Lockdown Learning appeal has been raised.
The appeal, which aims to help provide underprivileged families with the tools they need to learn from home during the coronavirus lockdown, has raised a whopping £271,550.
As of last Monday, 1,053 laptops and devices worth more than £206,000 had been funded by the appeal, reaching 30 primary and secondary schools across West Berkshire and North Hampshire.
The trust is also supporting a new scheme to refurbish 200 donated laptops and tablet devices for children, in partnership with the Newbury Community Resource Centre (NCRC).
The NCRC has been collecting donated laptops from the general public in response to the crisis of access to devices for remote learning, of which approximately two-thirds are suitable for refurbishment.
NCRC is working with Green Machine, a Ramsbury-based IT company, to refurbish the laptops ready for issue to schools and directly to local families in need.
While Green Machine is donating its staff time and project management costs free of charge, a Greenham Trust grant of £10,000 is funding additional costs such as replacing screens, installing anti-virus software and supplying accessories for the 200 refurbished laptops.
NCRC chief executive Kelvin Hughes said: "Throughout the pandemic we have seen an increasing need for support from vulnerable local families.
"The closure of schools and move to remote learning has placed an additional burden on all families, especially low-income families who are not eligible to send their children to school and who simply can't afford to provide the devices needed to participate in online lessons and complete school work.
"Alongside Greenham Trust's Laptops for Lockdown Learning fund, which is helping schools plug the gap, we are delighted to be getting support from Green Machine and the general public to supply this additional equipment to those most in need."
Greenham Trust chief executive Chris Boulton said: "This is a fantastic example of collaboration – recycling laptops kindly donated by the public, a company donating its time and skills for the community and the expertise of the NCRC in coordinating efforts to reach those who are in need.
"This fits with our objective of our laptops appeal, which is to get laptops and devices to those families who are struggling to give their children the equipment they need."
To support and have your donation matched £1 for £1 by Greenham Trust visit the Good Exchange's website.
The NCRC is currently closed due to coronavirus restrictions, so people are urged to contact them before travelling to the centre to ensure someone is available on site.
If you are a school that has families who don't have access to devices to enable their children to learn from home, apply online.