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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.

Digital inclusion challenges: Devices

North West Glasgow Voluntary Sector Network, is a support organisation that offers advocacy, training, advice and networking to charities and community groups in the North West of Glasgow. During lockdown, member organisations, came to us saying that they were moving most of their support services online but discovered many of the people they serve didn’t have devices and/or internet access. They had previously relied on libraries and community services get access to devices and internet, but they were closed. We did some research and found out the extent of digital exclusion and that it wasn’t caused by lockdown but had been exacerbated by it. I started the refurbishment project to meet the need and then discovered so much equipment that could be used is in landfill.   


Since May 2020, we given out over 1000 devices. We take donations of laptops, phones, tablets and PCs, digitally wipe them, put on a free operating system and office package, PAT test for electrical safety, then give them to those who are digitally excluded in the community. We have a referral process where member organisations or friends of the network; refer those they work with that are digitally excluded: these referral agencies come from- third sector, health professionals, education staff, employability staff. We offer a device package with a PC, laptop, tablet or phone, at least 6 months internet access and a ‘How to guide’. Referrers are then responsible for setting up the device with the recipient and after care.  

Last modified on 23 November 2023