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Over 4000 More Households Connected To The Internet

Since the start of the Covid-19 lockdown on 25 March 2020, more than 4000 households have connected to the internet using the subsidised Skinny Jump service, supported by the Spark Foundation.

Most of these 4000 new customers come from six digitally excluded groups – seniors, people in rural communities, people in social housing, Māori and Pasifika youth, families with children in low socio-economic areas and people with disabilities. These groups were quick to respond when the Spark Foundation expanded the eligibility criteria that coincidentally happened on the same day that the Covid-19 lockdown started.

“What is so amazing is that this record number of signups has been achieved, not only in just over two months, but also when most of the organisations that help people sign up for Skinny Jump have had their doors closed”, said Laurence Zwimpfer, Operations Director for the Digital Inclusion Alliance Aotearoa (DIAA). “We applaud the people in our 200 partner organisations, such as libraries and local community groups, who made this possible by working from their homes and helping their communities signup for Skinny Jump by phone.”

With New Zealand now at Level 1 for the Covid-19 response, Skinny Jump partners have opened their doors again and most have recommenced issuing modems and helping applicants in person set up their Skinny accounts.

“We encourage people seeking a Skinny Jump service to contact their nearest local partner for assistance. We would also like to acknowledge the family members who have helped whānau connect to Jump. Almost every day, we hear stories of family members helping whānau set up their Skinny Jump modems,” concluded Mr Zwimpfer.

About the Skinny Jump Service

Skinny Jump is a programme designed to assist more New Zealanders access affordable broadband at home. Skinny Jump currently supports just shy of 10k New Zealand homes. There are no upfront charges; the wireless modem is free and comes with 30GB preloaded. A maximum of five top ups are permitted; each top up for 30GB costs $5. There are no credit check and no contracts. Jump is for households that don’t need more than 150GB a month. Households requiring more than 150GB per month should explore other plans. A unique feature of Skinny Jump is that it is only available through DIAA’s national Stepping UP partner network, a nationwide network of over 200 organisations www.skinny.co.nz/jump

About Digital Inclusion Alliance Aotearoa (DIAA)

The Digital Inclusion Alliance Aotearoa was established in 2018 to foster socially inclusive communities where everyone has equitable opportunities to meaningfully engage with digital technologies, and benefit from the use of them.

It aims to enhance the confidence and capability of people living in New Zealand to engage online to advance their own education, employment, health and wellbeing as well as that of their whānau.

The Alliance acts as a catalyst for digital inclusion initiatives, by working with local communities, not-for-profit organisations, business enterprises and government agencies to pursue a shared digital inclusion vision.

Any organisation or individual working to achieve a more digitally included community is welcome to become a partner of the Alliance. www.diaa.nz

About Spark Foundation

Spark Foundation is the charitable organisation for Spark New Zealand. Our vision is that no New Zealander is left behind in a digital world. Our mission is to accelerate towards digital equity, including access, skills, capabilities and wellbeing in the digital age. The Spark Foundation subsidises the Skinny Jump service to make it affordable to all New Zealand households.

 

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