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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

Connecting Scotland returns with new opportunities

Connecting Scotland began as an emergency response in April 2020 at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. By 2022, over 61,000 households across Scotland had received a Chromebook or iPad, along with 2 years of free unlimited internet access. Over 1,000 organisations got involved and supported their device recipients to get online. A real team effort, Connecting Scotland has achieved a huge amount through successful collaboration between public, private and voluntary sector organisations.  

Today, lockdowns may be in the past, but we continue to live in an increasingly digital world. We all know the extent to which the pandemic has propelled forward the digitisation of services across all sectors. We also know that there are still many people who do not have the means or skills to access the internet. This lack of access is as much an indicator as it is a driver of inequality, and action is required if we are to create a fairer and more equal society.  

We are therefore excited to share that Connecting Scotland will continue to support and promote digital inclusion in the post-pandemic world. In addition to ongoing support for those involved in the original programme, Connecting Scotland is now launching two new funds for organisations. The funds signal a new direction of the programme, which is moving from a pandemic-specific device gifting model to supporting organisations’ new or existing digital inclusion initiatives, creating and boosting capacity at a local level.  

Organisations will be able to apply for the following two funds, with a third opportunity opening later in the year: 

  1. Device lending libraries 
    The device lending libraries programme is open to organisations that are already running device lending libraries. It can help them expand the range of devices and mobile connectivity that they have available, extend the number of devices available for loan or replace devices that are coming to the end of their lives. 
  1. Housing providers 
    The housing programme provides devices and/or connectivity to organisations providing social housing or transitional accommodation. Organisations can apply for devices and connectivity to be used in lending schemes and hubs, as well as grants for connectivity infrastructure projects benefitting their residents. 

Both funds are open for applications from 29th August 2023. For more information and application details please visit the Connecting Scotland website.

Last modified on 31 August 2023