£187,000 Funding to Support Digital Inclusion across Kent

Kent Community Foundation has £187,000 to distribute to grassroots groups to enhance their digital offer and strengthen client-facing technology infrastructure.

The Digital Inclusion Fund is open for applications from charitable organisations across Kent and Medway who are working hard to reduce digital exclusion.

Grants of up to £10,000 are available for a wide range of activity, including work with disadvantaged young people seeking training, the elderly navigating digital services such as benefits and health services and vulnerable adults accessing training and skills development to enable independent living.

Natalie Smith, Director of Grants and Impact, Kent Community Foundation, said, “This Fund was opened in November 2021 with £300,000, after a match funding programme from Kent County Council. We have distributed the first round of grants to sixteen groups including West Faversham Community Association, Fusion Maidstone, Headway Kent, and Healthy Living Centre Dartford and are now taking new applications for grants of up to £10,000 which will be awarded from the £187,000 balance of the Fund.”

One of the beneficiaries of the first round of funding was Kent Coast Volunteering who received £10,000 for their Folkestone Nepalese Digital Inclusion Project.  The project focuses on helping elderly Nepalese people to learn IT skills and how to use computers, so that they can connect with health and social care services, feel less isolated and support their wellbeing.

Kerry Smith, CEO of Kent Coast Volunteering said, “In a world where information, services and support are all accessed online;  funding from Kent Community Foundation’s Digital Inclusion Fund means that our Volunteer Digital Champions can continue to support Nepalese Elders, helping people of all abilities get connected at pace that suits, and from a place that is warm and welcoming.”

Natalie Smith continued “Kent Coast Volunteering has been working with the Nepalese community for the last eight years and we were delighted to support their application as it directly aligned with one of the key areas that the Fund supports. If groups are unsure about their eligibility or have any questions, our grants team would be very happy to support them with the application process.”

To apply to the Digital Inclusion Fund, visit www.kentcf.org.uk/funding/KCC-digital-inclusion-fund

About the Digital Inclusion Fund

Grants can cover digital project staff delivery costs, technology loan schemes for beneficiaries and upgrade or enhance of customer facing IT systems.

Grants of up to £10,000 are available, but many grants will be for less. Grants are not available for individuals.

Applications close on 30 June 2022

If you have any questions about the Digital Inclusion Fund, please contact natalie@kentcf.org.uk or visit www.kentcf.org.uk/funding/KCC-digital-inclusion-fund

About Kent Community Foundation

Grant-maker Kent Community Foundation has been finding, funding, and supporting some of the smallest voluntary organisations in the county for twenty years. In this time, it has distributed over £50 million to support thousands of small charities and deserving causes where a modest sum of money can make a significant impact.

They are part of a UK wide accredited network of forty-seven Community Foundations who are committed to improving the lives of local people and communities, particularly the most vulnerable, isolated, and disadvantaged by matching those who want to help, with those who need the help.

Responsible for more than eighty philanthropic funds, Kent Community Foundation is unrivalled in its knowledge of local causes and assists individuals, families, and businesses, who want to help, to establish and administer their own charitable funds.