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The Essentia Foundation

People Know How

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Success Stories

People Know How

Edinburgh and East Lothian

People Know How was established in 2013. Delivering services across Edinburgh and East Lothian, the organisation works collaboratively to deliver projects and social change with projects reaching children, young people and vulnerable adults. People Know How aims to eliminate data poverty through connectivity for all and to establish social innovation in the public consciousness. Volunteering is at the heart of People Know How with 160 volunteers supporting the service delivery to approximately 1,200 people per year.

Funding from the Essentia Foundation is helping to support People Know How’s Computer Delivery project. This initiative distributes digital equipment to the communities of Edinburgh and East Lothian and aims to breakdown the social barriers that have been caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Project funds are being used to refurbish preloved devices that are then given to members of the local community. People Know How provides equipment to individuals from all walks of life such as parents’ homes schooling on mobile phones and grandparents shielding alone to people with learning disabilities and those who are isolated and in poor mental health.

A key pillar of the Computer Delivery Project is the concept of connectivity and People Know How has worked hard to ensure that once an individual receives their device, they can then be matched with a befriender who encourages and guides them to learn new skills and reconnect with friends, family, hobbies, and passions online. This has led to the creation of an active online space in which traditional community ties are maintained and new ones are being made.

Since April 2020, People Know How has delivered over 1,300 devices to local households. The Computer Delivery Project has facilitated tangible change towards connectivity for all and has led to the creation of online events such as ‘Connect Four : Digital Inclusion’ which took place in November 2020. This event invited key voices in digital from across the academic, business, and public sectors to take part in discussions and explore the obstacles to achieving digital inclusion in Scotland.

Project Testimonials

“It was a joy to hand over a superb device to someone who has never been online before but now has the internet coming into her little flat.”

Helen, People Know How Volunteer

“I just cannot thank the project and my befriender enough for making such a difference in my life. Only today I was on Face Time and watched my granddaughter playing the cello. Brought tears to my eyes.”

Shelia, computer device recipient

“It’s remarkable that People Know How have delivered 500 devices and it’s great to see the work actively reaching people in the community. I’m very grateful to everyone involved for all they’ve done to help and empower so many people in these challenging times.”

Ben Macpherson MSP on the 500th Delivery

“This kind of thing helps him keep well. It’s life-changing.”

Pauline, carer of device recipient

Project Outputs

Our video all about the project, premiered at our event in November:

Project Images

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