An initiative allowing UK charities to apply for free data has been launched by Vodafone, in an effort to tackle digital exclusion.
The goal is to enable organisations to improve their digital capacity, as well as to assist individuals and families.
Registered charities can apply for SIM cards with 20GB of data, with free calls and texts every month for six months.
According to the 2021 Charity Digital Skills report, 45% of charities have had to give their users data, support or devices to enable them to access the web and 20% said they had to cancel services because they didn't have the technology or skills needed to deliver them.
The scheme can be used to receive free data to any device which is enabled to use a SIM card, including laptops, phones, tablets and dongles.
Helen Lamprell, who is the general counsel and external affairs director at Vodafone UK, said: ““We hope that by giving free connectivity to charities across the UK, we can enable them to better support their local communities, particularly those that are digitally excluded. We want to support projects big and small - please help us share this offer so we can reach as many charities as possible.”
"At Vodafone, we’ve put tackling digital exclusion at the heart of our business with our pledge to connect one million people by the end of 2022.
“All applications will be reviewed and a decision to support made within 30 days. SIMs will be issued within 30 days of a positive decision and are ready for distribution from 1 September 2021,” the application form says.
The process could take "a little longer" if a charity requires more than 100 SIMS, but "we'll work with you to support your needs”.
SIMs are available until 1 November 2022, or until the supplies run out.