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Since 2020, we have been donating phones, SIMs and data to help vulnerable and disadvantaged people reconnect with society through the Reconnects programme. The initiative was made up of two streams, the Crisis partnership, and the Little Helps scheme. Our ground-breaking partnership with Crisis ended in August and whilst we remain completely committed to tackling digital exclusion, we will be ending the current Little Helps scheme at the end of 2022.
Our Little Helps scheme was a great success, helping over 41,000 people from 2020 to 2022. We’ve decided to end the Little Helps scheme in its current form, as we’d love to reach even more people facing hardship than ever before and believe our new partnership with the Trussell Trust will do just that.
From 2020 to 2022 we worked with over 4,000 charity partners and community groups across the UK. From national charities to local community organisations, we helped deliver connectivity to people who needed it the most. The Little Helps scheme helped over 41,000 people and donated the equivalent of over £2.5m in value of devices and connectivity.
We will be ending the Little Helps scheme at the end of this year, by 30th December 2022. Whilst we are in the process of exiting the scheme, we will honour all of the requests that we receive from charities until this point that meet the criteria for the scheme as outlined on our website and through the application process.
At Tesco Mobile, we care for human connection and believe everyone has the right to be connected. That’s why we have announced a new target of connecting 50,000 more people by 2025. We will reach this target through our partnership with the Trussell Trust from 2023.
Through the Little Helps Databank, Tesco Mobile will be donating data-loaded SIM cards to people referred to food banks in the Trussell Trust network. We will also be donating tablets, mobile Wi-Fi and SIM cards to food banks themselves, so that they can provide their services as efficiently as possible.
The new partnership is important because we care for human connection. Without connection, people are locked out of life-changing services, held back from opportunities, and cut off from loved ones. The partnership offers a way to help provide this essential connectivity to people who need it most, alongside the food and funding provided via Tesco’s 10 year partnership with the Trussell Trust.
Our two schemes to offer devices and connectivity to food banks through the Trussell Trust network is the ‘Little Helps Databank’ and ‘Connected Food Banks. Through the Little Helps Databank, we will be donating data-loaded SIM cards to people referred to food banks in the Trussell Trust network. We will also be donating tablets, mobile Wi-Fi and SIM cards to food banks themselves, so that they can provide their services as efficiently as possible. We call this programme ‘Connected Food Banks’