UKRANIAN refugees arriving in Worcester will be boosted with free connectivity from Claines Church thanks to Vodafone.
Church chiefs will work with the Help for Ukrainians in Worcester group to make the connectivity available to Ukrainians arriving in Worcester under the ‘Homes for Ukraine’ sponsorship scheme. The connectivity is set to benefit 50 people initially.
Vodafone’s Charities Connected scheme is open to any registered cause which would benefit from free connectivity, either to improve its digital capability, extend its services or help the individuals and families it supports get online.
Registered charities across England can apply for the free connectivity, in the form of SIM cards with 20GB data a month plus free calls and texts, for six months
Rev Jo Musson, vicar of Claines Church said: “Whilst we’ve faced challenges during the pandemic, the situation for our Ukrainian friends is even more challenging. This offer will help Ukrainians settling in Worcester to keep in touch with their families and loved ones and enable us to reach more people and provide them with much-needed support.
“We are welcoming our first two Ukrainians into the parish this week and it will be wonderful to support them,” she added.
Geoff Sansome, a member of the Help for Ukrainians in Worcester group said: “This is a really welcome idea and we are grateful to Claines Church for offering themselves as the registered charity to make this happen. We will allocate the SIM cards on behalf of the church as and when our Ukrainian friends arrive.”
Emma Reynolds, head of communications, sustainability and regulatory affairs at Vodafone UK said: “We are committed to tackling digital exclusion. We hope by providing free connectivity to our Ukrainian friends in Worcester via Claines Church and the other amazing charities across the UK who have such an enormous impact on their local communities, we can help create a more inclusive digital society.
The scheme is part of the mobile phone giant’s commitment to tackle digital exclusion and connect one million people by the end of 2022.