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Explore our stories - over 61,000 devices were distributed, so each story represents the impact a new device has made to thousands of people across Scotland.

About Connecting Scotland

Connecting Scotland began as an emergency response in April 2020 at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, initially aiming to help 9,000 people who were digitally excluded and who had to isolate because they were clinically vulnerable. This was achieved in just three months. As lockdown continued, so did Connecting Scotland with further phases to support households with children or care leavers, older and disabled people, and those looking for work.

By 2022 over 61,000 households across Scotland had received a Chromebook or iPad, along with 2 years of free unlimited internet access. Over 1,000 organisations got involved and supported their device recipients to get online.

Also crucial to the success of Connecting Scotland was a national team of Digital Champions, trained by Mhor Collective, who helped people get started with their device and internet connection. Additional support has been provided by the Connecting Scotland helpline run by social innovation charity People Know How and the email helpdesk staffed by SCVO’s digital team.

A real team effort, Connecting Scotland has achieved a huge amount through successful collaboration between public, private and voluntary sector organisations.

  • 1,047 organisations across the voluntary and public sector supported, who delivered
  • 5,052 Connecting Scotland projects
  • 4,250 Digital Champions trained
  • 31,355 Chromebooks distributed
  • 29,801 iPads distributed
  • 55,937 mobile WiFi connections (MiFis) distributed

Connecting Scotland has an evaluation programme, including welcome and impact questionnaires, detailed interviews with recipients and independent research into the operational effectiveness of the programme. You can find out more by exploring the reports below.

Phase 1 evaluation
Phase 2 evaluation
Phase 3 evaluation
Impact report – A Year in View
Blake Stevenson report (external evaluation)

Connecting Scotland won a UK Digital Impact Leaders award in 2021, for leveraging technology to improve mental healthcare and awareness.

Being online has become an essential lifeline, keeping us connected to friends and family, informed and entertained, and able to learn, work, shop and access health information and other public services.

Sue, who received a device and internet connection via the Libertie Project (now Red Chair Highland), put it like this:

The three components of device, connectivity and support have been transformational for me. It wouldn’t have been as successful without all three. Many thanks to all those responsible for this life-enhancing scheme. Its value to me has been, and remains, immeasurable.

Celebrating Connecting Scotland and the difference it has made for people all over Scotland: