Thanks to a grant from WCVA, NYAS Cymru have been able to provide laptops and tablets to 70 young people aged between 16-25 across Wales. The aim of providing the laptops and tables was to enable young people to continue with their education, manage household finances, undertake job searches, maximise their potential and have access to technology that would allow them to maintain contact with friends and family throughout lockdown.

We worked closely alongside our Youth Participation Advisory Group (YPAG), a group of care-experienced young people aged between 13 and 25 across Wales who help to inform the work of NYAS Cymru. The YPAG advised which devices would be most beneficial to young people.

Early feedback from the young people suggested that access to these digital tools has made a huge impact on supporting the mental health and wellbeing of the young people who received them. One young person who received a laptop said, “I applied for a laptop so that I could achieve my full potential. I will do this by looking for employment opportunities such as applying for the RAF; finding local clubs and gyms to help me increase my sports participation; and to feel more connected to friends and family, as I currently live in a different county to them and it is hard to see and speak to them due to COVID-19.”

Through the digital devices grant, we believe that we have made a significant difference to the lives of all the care-experienced young people who received the digital equipment. Too many young people have struggled through the pandemic because of disproportionate access to digital devices. NYAS Cymru hope to have paved the way for many and opened doors so that care-experienced young people have access to the same opportunities as their peers.