The Digital Poverty Alliance was launched two years ago by the Learning Foundation. At the height of Covid 19, we saw an incredible push to the online world, transforming the way services were delivered to people and businesses without looking back. It was clear at this time that millions of people did not have the access that they needed to participate in this “new normal”, but as the pandemic receded and new ways of working set in, those millions of people were largely forgotten.The rush to the online world has only kept going.
This is why the work of the Digital Poverty Alliance – both its own team and the organisations that make up the Alliance – has never been so important. The speed of transformation is phenomenal, and how society operated just four years ago now seems so alien to many of us. But equally, to many millions, going online to access homework, healthcare, job, shopping, entertainment, welfare – this is what seems alien.
Within the past year, the Digital Poverty Alliance has seen huge progress in its own work and how it can best support the digital inclusion sector. In 2023, we launched our National Delivery Plan (NDP). In the absence of an up to date national Digital Inclusion Strategy, our NDP aims to highlight key tasks and actions that need to be taken over the course of the coming years to eliminate digital poverty within the UK by 2030. Shortly after, the House of Lords released the results of their Digital Exclusion Inquiry, led by Baroness Stowell.
We also launched our Industry Forum, an opportunity for corporates to join with the Digital Poverty Alliance and contribute to the mission. We believe that digital poverty can only be solved by government, industry and the charitable sector coming together, and the voice of business is vital in formulating new and innovative responses to digital poverty.
If you are already part of our community, a huge thank you for everything you are already doing to drive social change and help people in local areas. If you aren’t, this is a perfect time to find out how you can become a part of the mission to ensure no family is offline by the end of the decade.
Written by Elizabeth Anderson, Chief Executive Officer