A SOUTH Belfast charity which supports ethnic minorities and immigrants has launched a fundraising drive to support schoolchildren unable to access online learning from home.
The ‘One Child One Device + Broadband’ campaign has been launched by The Horn of Africa People’s Aid Northern Ireland (HAPANI) charity to help families like the Ahmads of South Belfast, who hail from Somalia, who have just one digital device between five children.
Based on Botanic Avenue, HAPANI has been at the vanguard of efforts to support refugees and asylum seekers here for a decade.
The new campaign is committed to providing refurbished laptops and internet access to 150 children to enable them to fully participate with homeschool programmes.
Suleiman Abdulahi Director and Founder of HAPINI said Covid has wreaked havoc with the educational progress of immigrant children. "In many cases, the families don't have broadband access and have no means to provide it as they are living on the poverty line. And we often encounter families where there is only one internet-enabled device for four or five children. Immigrant families are very hungry for education and their presence at schools has been a boon for the schools and the families alike but it's crucial they aren't left behind as we move to homeschooling."
Suleiman says the One Child One Device + Broadband scheme will provide refurbished laptops and internet access to children learning from home.
Anyone who wishes to contribute to the fundraising drive can call Suleiman on 07413525951 or email him at HAPANI.