Following the successful launch of the Sandwell Digital Donation scheme, Black Country Housing Group (BCHG), has gifted its first laptop to university student Sara.

Formed of a partnership between the leading Black Country-based housing association, Sandwell Council, and social enterprise Repc Ltd, the initiative is an add on to the Reconnect Project – a tablet loan scheme funded by the council.

The initiative encourages businesses to donate unwanted PCs, laptops, and tablets to be wiped, refurbished, and given a second lease of life to households and organisations within the borough.

It is expected that the Digital Donation Scheme will help to narrow the ‘digital divide’: the gap between people in society who have full access to digital technologies and those who do not or have restricted access.

Merisha Smith and Jeremy Grant from BCHG’s Reconnect Project team delivered the laptop in person to Sara. The donation, which is going to improve her ability to access the internet, will not only support her with her studies, but it will also allow Sara to connect with her peers and tutors online.

Speaking of the donation, Sara commented:

‘’I just wanted to say a big thank you for providing me with the laptop. I’m delighted with it, it’s perfect.

‘’The laptop is going to help me study for my counselling and psychology degree, which started this month.’’

The project has already received a great response from businesses across the Black Country handing in old devices.

Commenting on this, Katy McAllister, Project Manager at BCHG said:

‘We are delighted with the response to our new project and thankful to the local businesses who have already donated, enabling us to support people like Sara in the local community.

‘’The last year has been very difficult for those living in Sandwell, but we are hopeful that through this project we can help people like Sara to achieve their goals.’’

For more information on how to donate contact [email protected] or call Repc Ltd on 0121 5576439.


How Sandwell Digital Donation works

What to donate
* Any working device (PC, laptop or tablet).

What to do before donating
* Make sure you save any data you require on a back-up device
* Make sure you have complied with your organisation’s data protection policy on erasing sensitive data.

How to donate
* Ensure the device is fully turned off (and not in sleep mode)
* For Covid safety, clean the outside of the device with alcohol gel
* Contact [email protected]

Sandwell Digital Donation will:
* Issue verification certificates of data wiping
* Record that you donated the device
* Run a PAT (portable appliance test) for electrical safety
* Distribute it to a Sandwell family in need.

Please be aware that Sandwell Digital Donation:
* Will not use your details for any purpose other than proving the device was received in good faith
* Cannot return digital devices to you – they are being donated
* Will not resell, lease or otherwise profit from your donated equipment.