Here at Currys we pride ourselves on bringing technology to more people through our competitive pricing, access to online and physical stores, and affordable and responsible credit offering. But that’s not all: because our social purpose is at the heart of what we do, we also support causes that help those who might otherwise be excluded to benefit from amazing technology.
We are committed to helping eradicate digital poverty, in all countries we operate in.
In the UK alone 25% of vulnerable children do not have access to a suitable device for learning and 42% of offline users said “it’s not for people like me”. While in the Nordics one in five people have products at home that they do not know how to use.
Wherever we operate we can help:
- Our colleagues help people in their local communities access and enjoy tech.
- Our customers help us raise funds to help those who are digitally excluded.
- Our suppliers work collaboratively with us to be a force for good
Operating across the UK & Ireland, the Nordics and in Greece, our approach is tailored to meet the needs of each specific region and their relevant socio-economic conditions – We want everyone to be able to enjoy equal access to the benefits of technology.
Read our Social Impact Principles.
Digital Poverty Alliance
We are one of three founding partners of the Digital Poverty Alliance (‘DPA’, part of the Learning Foundation). The start-up phase of the DPA was funded by a £1m donation from Currys and we are proud that the last year has seen the DPA set out its strategy over the next two years to convene, compel and inspire collaboration within the UK community to lead sustainable action against digital poverty.
Our donation also funded the first DPA proof of concept project, Tech4Teachers, by equipping 1,000 teachers and teaching assistants in the country’s poorest communities with the technology and support they need to deliver high-quality home schooling to their pupils. These proof-of-concept projects are intended to innovate where there are gaps, and the success of the pilot has led to further support for this scheme from other companies seeking to drive change.
We are delighted to confirm our ongoing commitment to the DPA and in 2022/23 we will be using Pennies funds to support vulnerable families in need with life changing access to technology.
Currys is working with the DPA to drive digital inclusion by providing a laptop to families who struggle to get online. The Tech4Families project helps to support vulnerable families in need with life changing access to technology.
Read more in our press release: Currys select the Digital Poverty Alliance to become its new in-store UK Pennies donation partner | Currys PLC
Read more from the DPA: Working with Currys to provide vital Tech4Families (digitalpovertyalliance.org)
To make a donation visit us in store, or donate online at https://digitalpovertyalliance.org/donate/
At Currys we have helped digitally excluded older persons through our partnership with Age UK.
Age UK was chosen by UK colleagues in March 2020 as our corporate charity partner for a two-year period, with the aim of helping digitally excluded older people benefit from amazing technology and connecting them to those that love and need them. With thanks to our colleagues and customers, in that time we have raised over £350,000 for Age UK’s Tech Connected programme.
During our partnership, in 2021/22 our customers raised £229,394 through Pennies instore donations and our colleagues raised £7,200 through our fundraising activities. Seven colleagues have also volunteered and made friendship calls, spending 76 hours, 40 minutes and 42 seconds speaking to lonely older people.
With the money raised over the last two years Age UK has been able to develop and launch 21 much needed Digital Support Guides on topics older people have identified as being in most need of. These guides will help enable older people to get and stay connected to their loved ones, supporting their mental health and, importantly, keeping them safe in the online world.
To have a look at the guides, please visit https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/work-learning/technology-internet/digital-instruction-guides/
Community fundraising is encouraged right across Currys, and each year our colleagues support many causes which resonate locally.
Our UK Retail colleagues have climbed, ran, cycled, dressed up and completed incredible challenges to raise thousands of pounds for charities important to them.
We are the leading consumer electronics retailer in the Nordics, with retail stores across Norway, Sweden & Denmark and Finland.
Elkjøp entered into a number of long-term strategic partnerships to strengthen the ability to fight digital exclusion more effectively. Over £400,000 has been committed.
In Norway we work in partnership with SOS Children's Villages, focusing on their Digital Village project which aims to close the digital gap and give marginalised children and young people in Norway equal opportunities through technology. A key focus is on developing IT centers, providing access to the Internet, and promoting safeguarding competence and security online. This way, children and young people get the tools they need to succeed in the technological future.
As part of the journey to fight digital exclusion we partnered up with Stiftelsen Läxhjälpen, an organisation that helps students, particularly in vulnerable areas, to complete primary school and gain upper secondary school eligibility. The ambition with the partnership is to enhance the possibilities for more students throughout the country to be able to take part in Läxhjälpen's digital program. Also new is the partnership with Barnens Dator (‘Computers for kids’), focusing on donating gaming computers to kids and families that risk missing out due to low income.
In Denmark we work in partnership with Danish Peoples Aid, focusing on their project School Start Aid. Every year 65,000 children in Denmark have their first day of school. School Start Aid supports Denmark’s poorest and most vulnerable children to get a good and worthy start in their school life and education by providing technological equipment needed for a successful first day of school.
Save the Children, focusing on their interactive learning solution and contributing to their digital childhood competence centre, Kidital. We have also joined the cross-sector Kaikille Kone initiative.
The Elkjøp Foundation
Established in 2017 to fight digital exclusion, the Elkjøp Foundation works to raise awareness, increase knowledge, and enable access to people who are falling behind in the rapid development of technology.
Kotsovolos supports low income families and the move to a circular economy through their Second Home initiative. Colleagues motivate customers to offer their unused devices and also take part in a Good Deed Day every year.
Through our Second Home initiative, Kotsovolos enables people who have functional devices they no longer use, to donate them and support families in need. Kotsovolos collects the device, repairs it and disinfects it, and then offers it to another family. If the appliance cannot be repaired, the company undertakes to recycle it.
Technology without Obstacles programme
Kotsovolos strives to empower people to live a better life with technology. This initiative aims to maximise access to technology for people with disabilities and is a key programme that is enabling digital inclusion for people with disabilities, and creating equal access for all.
Kotsovolos has also worked with Laddroller to create its next generation wheelchair. Laddroller was made to help wheelchair users worldwide to overcome their loss of autonomy. It is an entirely new, innovative approach to mobility compared to existing devices, allowing users to stand up when using Laddroller.
Good Deed Day
In Greece, our teams spend a day every year taking part in ‘Good Deed Day’, where they agree among themselves how they will support local causes. Good Deed Day was established in 2013 and is the biggest volunteer action for our Kotsovolos’ team. Every year, more than 1,000 volunteers from our stores, offices, warehouses and distribution centre participate in multiple actions focusing on children, minority social groups, older persons or the environment.
In 2021/22 colleagues gave up their time to volunteer on Good Deed Day, organising 17 blood donation drives totalling 256 pints of blood, supporting hospitals in Greece and Cyprus.