Cambridgeshire Freemasons are helping to provide children with Raspberry Pi computers through the ‘Digital Drive Cambridgeshire and Peterborough’ initiative.
The original request came from Provincial Grand Master Bill Dastur in a message to all Cambridgeshire Freemasons on 15th February and within a little over a week, his original target of 45 computers has been exceeded and there are several more donations still to come.
Bill Dastur of the Cambridgeshire Freemasons said:
The Digital Drive initiative is a fantastic county-wide appeal addressing a serious need for young people in Cambridgeshire. I am proud and overwhelmed by the swift and generous response from our members following my appeal to them just a few days ago. Charity is one of our core values and I hope our donations will make a significant difference to their education.
In Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, more than 8000 children and young people do not have laptops or PCs to enable them to access lessons, online resources, receive support from their teachers or interact with their classmates. Digital Drive are working in partnership with Cambridgeshire County Council, Peterborough City Council, the Cambs Youth Panel, Cambridge Digital Partnership, and Cambridge 2030 to make sure that every child across our county can access their schoolwork at home.
Phil Priestly of the Cambs Youth Panel said:
The Digital Drive is an essential part of eliminating the problem of digital inequality that we have in our region. The contribution of Cambridgeshire Freemasons is an incredible support towards what we are doing – both in terms of recycling previously owned equipment and in purchasing brand new computers for children and young people. The COVID-19 pandemic has really highlighted the depth of digital inequality in our region. The good will and the community spirit that has been displayed in this response is remarkable and uplifting for everyone involved.
The Pi 400 is the newest model from Raspberry Pi. The whole unit is built into the keyboard and comes with a matching mouse. It can connect into any standard screen via a HDMI cable. If screens are not available at home, then these can also be provided.
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About Cambridgeshire Freemasonry:
The Masonic Province of Cambridgeshire is relatively small, with Masonic Centres in Cambridge, Ely, Newmarket, March, Chatteris, Whittlesey and Wisbech. There are around 1500 Freemasons and 30 individual lodges. We pride ourselves on our friendliness and inclusivity, with members drawn from all walks of life and professional backgrounds. We welcome enquiries from anyone who is curious about our values and our history.
More information is available on our website and enquiries should be directed to our Provincial Office in Cambridge via https://www.cambridgeshirefreemasons.org.uk/ or to our Provincial Information Officer:
About the United Grand Lodge of England:
• The Premier Grand Lodge, which became the United Grand Lodge of England, was founded at the Goose and Gridiron Pub in London in 1717.
• It has 48 Provinces across the country and more than 7,000 Lodges, with students over the age of 18 able to join one of the 85 University Scheme Lodges.
• Freemasons use four important guiding principles to help define their path through life: integrity, friendship, respect and charity.
• One of the oldest social and charitable organisations in the world, Freemasonry’s roots lie in the traditions of the medieval stonemasons who built our cathedrals and castles.
• Membership is open to people from all backgrounds and the organisation’s aim is to empower members to be the best they can be – it’s about building character, supporting members as individuals and helping them make a positive contribution to society.
• Freemasonry is one of the largest charitable givers in the country, contributing more than £48m to deserving causes in 2018 alone. Freemasons do not only donate money – more than 18.5 million hours of volunteer work were undertaken by Freemasons in 2018.
Livia Ferreira, Public Relations Manager, United Grand Lodge of England
Telephone: +44 (0)20 7395 9208 | Mobile: +44 (0)7539 578699
Michelle Worvell, Director of Communications and Marketing, United Grand Lodge of England
Telephone: +44 (0)20 7395 9290 | Mobile: +44 (0)7538 512669