Bishop's Stortford kids are suited and rebooted with donated laptops courtesy of ITVET
A Bishop’s Stortford tech company has excelled in its goal to kit out disadvantaged schoolchildren with refurbished laptops.
ITVET in London Road started appealing in November for unwanted laptops and the team have since been refurbishing them and passing them on to local schools to keep teachers connected with students who have no access to their own digital devices during lockdown.
Last year, the Government launched a Get Help With Technology scheme and, so far, 750,000 devices have been sent out to students – but Stortford schools revealed that they did not receive as many as they needed through this initiative.
Richard Fountain, ITVET’s director, reached out to the town’s schools and asked how many laptops were needed and the team set to work on plugging the shortage.
His staff have driven as far as Northampton and Aylesbury to pick up donated devices before getting them up to speed and passing them on to schools.
They have had back-up from Andy and Ash Mahoney from 24x7 Taxis in Stansted, who have helped to collect laptops in harder-to-reach areas.
This month, the team hit their target and provided all of the laptops that were requested by Stortford schools for underprivileged pupils by delivering 120 in a single week.
These went to secondaries Birchwood High School, The Bishop’s Stortford High School and Hockerill Anglo-European College, Bishop’s Stortford primary schools All Saints and Manor Fields and village schools St Andrew’s in Much Hadham and Little Hadham. Bishop’s Stortford Food Bank also received one.
Richard says that it is not quite mission accomplished as his team are determined to help those from further afield.
“We will continue to operate the scheme to help schools in other areas, along with charities and private individuals who are not necessarily connected via a school for one reason or another,” he said.
“We have promises of larger volumes of laptops from a few of our clients which should reach us in the next one to two weeks. These are a little easier and quicker to turnaround as they can be delivered in one batch and are usually the same models and in good condition.
“It’s a little more difficult with a lot of the domestic donations as the quality can be quite poor at times, along with collecting single devices from households up and down the country, which saps our resources. But we’re getting there!”