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  • Taylor Hodgkinson

Over 600 families to receive access to free internet over the next twelve months.

The Foresight Foundation, an Oldham-based not-for-profit social enterprise committed to eradicating the digital divide, has teamed up with The Good Things Foundation to provide free internet and data for over 600 disadvantaged families.

As part of the CommunityDATA (Digital Access To All) initiative, 50 families per month in Oldham will be identified by the local authority, school partners and community organisations to receive 20 GB of free internet access and data. The aim is to help them access online resources, support the educational development of children and young people within their households, connect with loved ones, and pursue educational and employment opportunities.

"We are proud to officially roll out the partnership with The Good Things Foundation. Our missions and aims are aligned and we have a shared desire when it comes to our vision for digital access across the communities we work in and beyond” said the Directors of the Foresight Foundation in a joint statement.

"Our mission is to ensure that everyone has equal access to the digital world, regardless of their socio-economic status. We believe that access to the internet and digital skills is a basic right, and essential to success in the digitally advanced society we live in. We are committed to making digital poverty a thing of the past."

According to the Office for National Statistics, in 2019 around 1.5 million households in England do not have access to the internet as a result of affordability levels, that is before the impact of the current cost of living crisis being faced nationally.

Additionally, a survey by Ofcom in 2021 found that 9% of children in the UK, aged 5-15, do not have access to a device for online learning at home, with the figure rising to 19% among children from households with an annual income of less than £10,000.

These statistics demonstrate the extent of digital poverty in England and highlight the need for action to ensure that everyone has access to the internet and the digital skills needed to participate fully in society.

The Foresight Foundation, the charitable arm of award-winning Foresight IT Services has been working tirelessly behind the scenes since its inception and is committed to ensuring all communities have equal opportunities to become digital leaders of tomorrow, today.

Founded by Craig Barrat, Ged Tod and Dale Harris, the Foundation recently met with MP and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Angela Rayner on a visit to one of their partner schools to discuss the impact of digital poverty across Greater Manchester. The partnership with TheGood Things Foundation is another step towards achieving its goal of engaging, educating and empowering the local community in relation to digital literacy.

For more information on The Foresight Foundation and its mission to eradicate the digital divide, follow us on social media @TheForesightFdn

Left To Right: Dale Harris (Director Foresight Foundation), Craig Barratt (Director Foresight Foundation), Jonathon Hobday (Headteacher Hurst Knoll St James School) and MP Angela Rayner (Deputy Leader of The Labour Party)

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