Deloitte donates 5,000 laptops and supports Unicef’s COVAX appeal | Deloitte UK has been saved
Our last blog focused on resilience – something we’ve all needed a little of over the past year and will continue to need in the challenging weeks and months ahead. Adaptability is another trait that’s been key. All of us, in one way or another, has had to shift our way of life quite dramatically, and suddenly.
We’ve seen how our 5 Million Futures partner organisations have responded to these huge shifts too, ensuring they are supporting their beneficiaries, employees, pupils and colleagues through this challenging time.
We have been working with these 70 plus amazing organisations to understand how we too can respond and help them operate as best as they can under such difficult circumstances.
Narrowing the digital divide
While there’s no doubt that the crisis has been tough for everyone, data from our education partner Teach First shows the interruption to learning has had the largest negative impact on those children coming from underprivileged backgrounds and low-income communities. Alongside this, it’s estimated that nearly 12 million people in the UK don’t have the digital skills needed for everyday life.
We want to play our part to support people in accessing digital devices for virtual learning, as well as building digital skills.
That’s why this year we’ve pledged to donate 5,000 of our laptops to charities, education and individuals and families in need. Working with OCM and N2S we’ll prioritise 2,600 laptops for our partner schools, and distribute the remaining devices to those most in need.
We have also donated £8,000 to each of our 26 partner schools to help with their ongoing COVID-19 requirements - like extra devices, expansion of digital learning, mental health and food provision.
Volunteering goes virtual
Our 5 Million Futures programme has also been adapted over the last year – particularly our volunteering which pre-Covid-19, was delivered largely in-person. To make sure our people were still able to give their time and skills to make an impact in their communities (albeit at a distance), we’ve created lots of virtual volunteering opportunities.
We have partnered with TutorMate to support primary school children with their reading. Deloitte volunteers are tutoring pupils through The Access Project and Action Tutoring. In addition, colleagues have provided Deloitte services pro bono to help the roll out of the National Tutoring Programme, set up to help pupils keep up with the curriculum through the pandemic. Over 50 of people from across our firm are in the process of or have become, a school governor through Governors for Schools. To name a few.
It’s not just the education sector we’ve been working with. Charities have been hit hard by COVID-19, with an estimated funding gap for UK charities of more than £10 billion. These organisations provide a vital service within our communities. Through multiple fundraising initiatives, including a Covid-19 appeal last year and a One Hour appeal where employees could donate one hour of their salary in December and January, our people have raised £328,000 for our 23 charity partners.
Supporting with vaccinations
While the vaccine roll-out is well underway in the UK, many poorer countries will not be in a position to match the speed or scale of this critical immunisation programme.
We are proud of our North & South Europe firm’s contribution to Unicef’s role in COVAX, which aims to deliver 2 billion vaccine doses and 500 million tests. Unicef’s work is critical in ensuring those in low and middle-income countries have access to a COVID-19 vaccine.
While this is a really difficult time for many, the pandemic has demonstrated what governments, organisations and individuals can achieve when working together. We hope that through our partnerships with our 5 Million Futures partner organisations, we can make an even bigger impact on the people they help.
Charlotte has been working at Deloitte since 2011 across various marketing roles. She has been part of the firm’s Responsible Business team since 2016, managing marketing and communications for One Million Futures and the recently launched 5 Million Futures programme in the UK.