Sky has announced a new programme called Sky Up which aims to reduce the level of digital inequality in the United Kingdom. Backed by a £10 million fund, the programme will establish 100 new Sky Up hubs where people can come to improve their technical know-how and young people will receive grants that get devices and reliable internet connectivity into their hands.
The Sky Up programme is not aimed at the whole of society, rather it focuses on two groups: under 25’s in low-income areas and over 65’s. It’s addressing these age groups specifically because under 25’s that are digitally excluded end up falling behind in education and over 65’s make up the majority of those that lack digital skills, lack trust in technology, and don’t have a reliable internet connection.
To reach the over 65’s, Sky is working with Age UK centres around the country to deliver training and advice about going online safely and showing participants what services and opportunities there are online. Those between 16 and 25 who have left the care system will be helped by a Sky Up Tech Grant of £550. They will receive a device loaded with relevant software, a Sky internet connection, and access to skills training.
Commenting on the Sky Up programme, Sky’s Group CEO, Dana Strong, said:
“Digital connections can unlock opportunities for those who are most excluded. Sky Up will give people in need a chance to create a better future.”
The Sky Up programme is a part of a Project UP run by Sky’s parent company Comcast. Project UP will see a total of $1 billion invested to make sure more people get connected to the internet through affordable connections.