Tablet unlocks online savings for Charley

02 Jul 2020

Single mum Charley is reaping the benefits of online shopping thanks to a free tablet and data bundle provided by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

Charley, 22, lives in Hull with her son. Before lockdown, Charley was a sociable member of the community and had been receiving support for some time, including food parcels, from local community organisation St Stephens Neighbourhood Centre.

Charley tells us: “I like my own home space and felt that my house was my safe place, but I didn’t realise how much time I spent outside walking around and seeing new people.”

Now, the food parcels arriving are an important source of social contact for both Charley and her son, who waits for the knock on the door every Tuesday to see what is in the parcel.

After sharing her worries with St Stephens Neighbourhood Centre, it became clear that Charley does not have a fixed internet connection and only has limited data on her phone. Through the DevicesDotNow initiative, Charley was given a tablet with free data donated by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

Since receiving the tablet, clothes shopping for her son is much easier and Charley has been able to take advantage of online deals and savings. It also means she can buy essential items without putting herself or her son at risk. “I can browse online without having to go to the shops in the town and save money through online deals.”

Alongside easing the strain on her finances, Charley has now completed the “improving your health online” Learn My Way module, which interested her because she hopes to work in an administrative role for the health service. Charley tells us: “I have my level three health and social care from college. I like filling in paperwork and spreadsheets so it was one thing I gravitated to.”

“I feel that it has made life easier now that I have the tablet. My phone camera did not work so now I can have one-to-one video calls with my friends. I think it’s going to be a lot easier to learn things which will help me get a job.”

This device was funded through the Nobody in the Dark campaign, led by a coalition of partners including Good Things Foundation, Clean Slate, APLE Collective, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Mastercard. We aim to offer immediate support to digitally and financially excluded people in the UK, with a focus on those in poverty hit hardest by the impact of Covid-19. Read more about the campaign here.

DevicesDotNow is a joint initiative from FutureDotNow and the Department for Digital, Media, Culture and Sport supported by Good Things Foundation. Find out more about the initiative, including how you can get involved here.

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Nobody in the Dark