Laptops for Homeless People Initiative

Laptops for Homeless People Initiative

Laptop-rehoming program benefits the vulnerable populations, including the homeless, across the UK

Thanks to the new Laptops for Homeless initiative, the lives of hundreds of homeless and disadvantaged individuals have already been transformed. This initiative provides qualifying homeless individuals with reused working laptop computers, open source software, and training to use the technology. The Laptops for Homeless project is a support initiative of SocialBox.biz, a social impact business specialising in innovative technology and environmental social governance solutions for businesses. SocialBox.biz partners with a number of homelessness and other charities working with disadvantaged people, including those at risk of becoming homeless.

These computers with open source software installed will allow homeless and marginalised recipients the opportunity to communicate with friends and relatives, develop new interests and improve their skills and employment prospects. Charities are helping thousands of unemployed and economically disadvantaged people in the UK already, and these partnerships will help even more.

Participating Charities

                 

Peter Paduh Chairman of SocialBox.biz said:”Society is becoming ever more dependent on computerised technologies, but thousands of people still lack access to these vital resources, causing them to live in social and digital exclusion here in this country. Millions of still-working PCs are replaced and scrapped in the UK every year; our priority is to turn them into a  resource for the communities where you and I live so those who need them most can gain access to information technology, search for employment and reconnect with society. We’re delighted to be the founders on this exciting project which I’m sure will engage the enthusiasm of leaders and executives at companies and organizations across the region.”

Sam Forsdike from C4WS Homeless Project in Central London who find young homeless people shelter in church owned properties, providing them with mentoring, befriending scheme, jobs club and English classes said;

“Becoming a partner charity with Social Box and benefiting from the Laptops for Homeless Support initiative has been a fantastic addition to C4WS.

We work with those who are homeless and support them into accommodation. Once in their new homes we are frequently asked by our former guests how they can obtain computers that will enable them to take the next steps forward with their lives, whether this be searching for work, starting college or reconnecting with family and friends.

We have never been able to help them with these requests until discovering Social Box. It has been an absolute delight to see the stunned and excited faces of those guests we have been able to now give laptops to. This simple act makes a huge difference and we are excited to see the real changes it is making in their lives, and for their futures.”

Lorraine McGrath, Chief Executive of Simon Community Scotland said: “online access is vital to the process of finding a safe home, managing benefits, applying for jobs and even just keeping connected with family and friends in today’s world. Re-homing others unwanted goods, is the perfect way to offer that same opportunity to people in homelessness and we are delighted to be working with SocialBox.Biz in bringing this approach to Scotland.”

Richard Morris, UK CEO of Regus, says: “We are incredibly excited to be partnering with SocialBox.biz to support this cause. As a workspace provider driven by tech, we know how integral digital skills are to the way that people live and work.

“So, instead of putting your old mobile phone at the back of a drawer, never to be seen again, we are asking anyone using, or living nearby to, a Regus centre in London to make a difference by donating this unwanted tech. In doing so, you will be helping even more people to learn essential new skills.”

Gemma Appleton, who has engaged around one hundred Regus office buildings in the initiative, says,We are proud to be part of something bigger than our operation. Together, we are working to curb digital exclusion, and marginalisation

Peter Mather, BP’s UK head of country, said: “We are pleased to be able to support the Laptops for Homeless initiative. Digital skills play an increasingly central role in modern life, and providing access to homeless and disadvantaged individuals is important for building an inclusive society.”

Sharon Lewis spokesperson for Shell London added: “Many companies replace their older laptop computers with the latest in new technology well before their old computers have become completely useless.  My personal reflection is that this initiative should be encouraged as part of firms and employee Corporate Social Responsibility efforts.’’

Top Contributors

                        

SocialBox.biz is actively working to alleviate the stress caused by a lack of digital inclusion with our Laptops for Homeless initiative. Our goal is to provide minimum 1,000 laptops to qualifying homeless and disadvantaged individuals by the year 2020, and were making great strides!

And now, the award winning E-Learning Solutions team is helping us develop a course about Linux and open source software, which offers free word processing, email, and other basic programs for anyone to use. A number of free and low cost E-learning courses are already available via E-learning solutions website.

According to Harvard University and MIT founded platform, edX;

Linux powers 94% of the world’s supercomputers, most of the servers powering the Internet, the majority of financial trades worldwide and a billion Android devices. In short, Linux is everywhere. It appears in many different architectures, from mainframes to server to desktop to mobile and on a staggeringly wide variety of hardware.

Moreover, 97 percent of hiring managers reported that they will prioritise hiring Linux talent relative to other skills areas in the next six months, and 44 percent of hiring managers saying they’re more likely to hire a candidate with Linux certification.

Many free resources to learn about Linux and open source software provided by The Linux Foundation are also  available via the innovative Edx platform founded by Harvard and MIT.

The Linux Foundation sponsors the work of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and lead maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman and is supported by members such as Cisco, Fujitsu, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, NEC, Oracle and many others.

We already deliver offline training on open source Linux for those who need it the most and while our specific e-learning course about open source software is in development, we wanted to share another excellent training resource available to anyone facing a financial hardship and looking for develop their IT skills or gain employment in the technology sector. edX has created a more broad course on open source Linux software which is free for everyone to take online: 

https://www.edx.org/course/introduction-linux-linuxfoundationx-lfs101x-1

“Laptops for Homeless is a wonderful initiative, providing not just a hand out, but a hand up, to enable individuals to support themselves by conducting valuable, in demand work in the technology field,” said Linux Foundation General Manager, Training & Certification, Clyde Seepersad. “The Linux Foundation is proud to offer a range of free training courses to help individuals all over the world gain highly useful, marketable skills they can use to build and improve their livelihoods.”

Training for those who need it the most

So how can you get involved ? If you run a business or any other organisation, you can instruct your IT department to contact SocialBox.biz regarding your disused but still working laptops via SocialBox.biz platform.  SocialBox.Biz, a digital inclusion and laptop donation platform, will redistribute the items through qualifying charity partners.

How it works exactly ?

Social Impact

To start participating in the initiative please complete this form:

https://www.socialbox.biz/contact-us/

Our other digital inclusion initiatives

Laptops for young refugees:

http://www.refugeesupportnetwork.org/news/socialbox

Laptops for young disadvantaged people and those leaving the care system:

https://www.socialbox.biz/updates-on-our-work-with-paddington-charities/

Laptops for older people living in isolation

https://www.socialbox.biz/laptopsforolderpeople/