Deloitte is donating 5,000 of its laptops to UK schools, charities and families. The pledge, announced by Richard Houston, senior partner and chief executive at Deloitte North and South Europe, is in response to the growing digital skills gap and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Deloitte is committing that all of the firm’s used laptops will be reconditioned and given a second lease of life. Any devices unfit for future use, will be stripped and the parts will be recycled. Deloitte is working with IT disposal experts OCM to ensure all laptops are confidentially wiped to factory settings, rebuilt and upgraded.
Richard Houston, senior partner and chief executive at Deloitte North and South Europe, said: “Purpose guides our decision-making at Deloitte and during the pandemic our values have never been more important as we remain focused on helping to overcome barriers to education and employment. Our research shows that among those who have an annual household income of less than £13,500, 18% do not own or have access to a desktop or laptop computer. Lockdown has shifted the status of many devices from a nice-to-have to a must-have as education is now predominantly virtual. Digital inclusion has improved in recent years but those without access to the right technology, or skills to use the technology, are struggling.
“There is an urgent need to get computers into homes of children who are currently unable to access online lessons. While 5,000 laptops is a fraction of what’s required, that’s 5,000 additional people getting the critical digital access that they otherwise would not have had.”
Deloitte’s 5 Million Futures programme recently donated £8,000 to each of its 26 partner schools to help with their ongoing COVID-19 requirements. This included the expansion of digital learning, mental health care and food provision. This is in addition to the ongoing tutoring and mentoring the firm provides young people and to the support provided by Deloitte volunteers on governing bodies of schools.
About Teach First – a Deloitte 5 Million Futures partner
Teach First is an education charity with a mission to build a fair education for all. The charity believes that an excellent education is the best pathway to ensure that every young person can fulfil their potential and pursue their ambitions.
By recruiting, training and placing excellent teachers, as well as offering a range of school leadership programmes, the charity supports schools facing the biggest challenges to achieve that goal.
About OCM – IT disposal services acting for Deloitte
OCM, based in Pershore, asset track IT from the point of collection, using security vetted staff and tracked vehicles. Tracking of IT assets continues through the disposal process of data wiping, refurbishment, resale, WEEE recycling and in house scanned device shredding. OCM are a Gold ITAD partnering with Blancco whose data erasure software is certified by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), the UK Government’s National Technical Authority for Information Assurance.
More information here.