Giroscope believes that freedom of access to IT, which most of us in the UK now take for granted, is a key element in our community’s welfare and cohesion as we move forward digitally in the 21st century.

We initiated a project that as part of its activity seeks to refurbish PC’s then place them, together with free internet access and support, back into the community. This programme began at the now defunct Boulevard Village Hall and it continues at the former St. Matthew’s church.

A key element in the delivery of this project is the major contribution of our neurodivergent volunteers, particularly from Matthew’s Hub: a local charity that supports autistic people waiting for, or with a diagnosis formerly known as Asperger’s Syndrome or Higher Functioning Autism. Our volunteers support the IT infrastructure in Giroscope’s main office in west Hull and in our social enterprise parks in Arthur Street and Selby Street.

In addition there is a fully equipped computer suite which the volunteers also support – in 2020, thanks to a grant from Good Things Foundation, this provides free supervised training and help for members of the local community in need of guided IT access – we are a registered member of the Online Centres Network.

The pandemic of course brought new challenges, and as first lockdown began we rapidly distributed 64 refurbished devices (laptops, PCs, tablets and smartphones), the majority with pre-paid data packages, to members of the local community. This enabled children to access online teaching from home, and adults who were shielding to get online and stay better connected.

I believe (Giroscope) has helped me to boost my confidence…

James A., Computer Project Volunteer