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News Tesco Mobile’s ‘Little Helps’ helping vulnerable people stay connected

Updated: Oct 19, 2021

Digital connection can be a lifeline, keeping us connected to society and providing access to essential services. Something that was felt even more greatly during COVID-19 as the world became even more reliant on technology to stay connected.

Tesco Mobile believes everyone has the right to be connected. That’s why in 2020 it launched Tesco Mobile Reconnects, which will see over £2.4 million worth of phones, devices, and connectivity donated to help vulnerable and disadvantaged people reconnect with society by 2023. Forming part of the Reconnects initiative, the ‘Little Helps’ scheme works with charities and organisations across the UK to help those in need stay connected when they need it most.

Since launch, Little Helps has donated more than 11,200 data loaded devices and 2,500 SIMs to over 550 charities and community initiatives including: homelessness, domestic abuse, autism, drug rehabilitation, schools and hospitals as well as well-known organisations such as the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, and local constituents. Below are some examples of how the Little Helps scheme has been able to help:

The charity, St Mungo's, who offers its support to those experiencing homelessness, reached out to Tesco Mobile during the first lockdown and were grateful to receive a number of smartphones and pre-loaded sim cards, allowing service users to find emergency accommodation and communicate with loved ones. Cath, a volunteer from St. Mungo’s, said: “When I was giving the phones to people, some of them were moved to tears because it meant they could contact their families.”

Little Helps was also able to provide phones and data to families of children with autism during lockdown through the charity Perth Autism Support, so that they could continue to receive support when it was needed the most. Former fundraising manager for Perth Autism Support, Faith said: “The phones Tesco Mobile donated have literally been a lifeline during the lockdown period.”

Sadly, domestic abuse organisations observed an increase in domestic violence during lockdown. At such times when your own home isn’t safe, a phone can be a lifeline. Little Helps worked with Dyfed Powys Police in Wales and Angus Women’s Aid in Scotland to provide phones, devices and data to help them protect victims of domestic violence, coercive control and stalking. Zoe, a Detective Sergeant from Dyfed and Powys Police, said: “The phones we've had from Tesco Mobile have helped to give victims control back over their lives.”

Little Helps will continue helping vulnerable people through grassroots charities and organisations working across these areas:

  • Families and young people

  • Mental health

  • Domestic abuse

  • Homelessness

If you represent an organisation or charity in one of these areas and you need help, please email:

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