Covid-19 laid bare the true extent of digital exclusion amongst local residents. Internal surveys and information from local partners revealed a lack of devices, data, money, skills and confidence to fully access online services. Wandsworth Council estimate that 1 in 4 local residents are digitally excluded. And so, the telephone, postal service and doorstep visits were the norm. Many local people have been cut off from the plethora of services and support they could have reached, if they’d been online.
KLS’ starts to go digital but could do so much more
Our community teams have been working to make KLS, our services and members, more digital. We’ve moved a lot of our services online e.g. Corona Homework Clubs, ESOL (English) classes online, and Elders onto Zoom with projects like the ‘12 Zooms of Christmas’.
We’ve secured 200+ laptops for our young people to access their education online. This runs alongside KLS’ laptop lending library of 55 laptops.
We’ve supported local groups, particular Power to Connect, to get up and running, so that they can support more residents get the computer devices they need.
And we’ve set up the ‘Wandsworth Digital’ partnership to make Wandsworth a more digitally inclusive borough. It’s a new partnership of 70+ local organisations made up of charities, community organisations, schools and colleges, independent funders, businesses and the Council.
But all of this is just the tip of the iceberg. We need your help. With further funding, staff and volunteers, we could achieve so much more to support local residents in Battersea lead more digital and independent lives.
We need your help, please make a donation
Please make a donation at www.klsettlement.org.uk/donate
To donate an old (but working) laptop or tablet please do so with our partner, Power to Connect www.powertoconnect.co.uk
Katherine Low Settlement is a much-loved, busy charity that has been at the heart of the community in Battersea, south-west London, since 1924.
With a few staff and a lot of volunteers, Katherine Low Settlement runs a range of its own popular community projects including educational courses and wellbeing activities. The charity supports children, young people and their families, older people, refugees and newly arrived communities of all genders, nationalities and religions.
The Katherine Low Settlement building in Battersea High Street, opened in 1924, is used for community activities and events, usually – until the arrival of Covid-19 – by over 500 people a week. Its rooms are available for hire at affordable rates.
Katherine Low Settlement is grateful for the funding received from supporters, trusts and foundations to enable the charity to continue to reduce poverty and isolation and bring Battersea together.
High resolution digital images available from Katherine Low Settlement press contacts.