A partnership of business and civic leaders will use its network of member organisations across the North to source computers for the Laptops for Kids campaign.
The campaign - which was launched by The Star, WANdisco and Learn Sheffield - aims to close the ‘digital divide’ by providing free computers to the young people in Sheffield who are in need of one.
David Richards, founder and CEO of data software company WANdisco, said: “We are delighted the Northern Powerhouse Partnership is lending its support to our campaign.
“The COVID-19 crisis continues to disrupt the education of a generation of young people and it is shocking that many are falling further behind because they cannot log on for homework.”
The Northern Powerhouse Partnership is an independent and non political body that was launched in September 2016 - it encourages businesses, civic leaders and others to work together to develop ideas on how the North of England can be more successful.
Henri Murison, director of Northern Powerhouse Partnership, said: “Education is the engine of social mobility but without internet access many children cannot keep up with their studies.
“We know it is the most disadvantaged children – who already lag behind their classmates - who are most likely to have no access to the right technology, and end up falling further behind.
“With cases rising quickly, the number of children being sent home is likely to soar in the coming weeks and we can’t afford to let the education gap widen even more.
“Businesses have the power to help bridge this gap by donating unused laptops to the Laptops for Kids campaign. This will give many of the most vulnerable children a better chance at fulfilling their potential.”
The Laptops for Kids campaign wants to encourage as many businesses to donate as soon as they can.
Learn Sheffield is working with schools to coordinate distribution of the devices.
Companies and organisations should email [email protected] to organise their donations.