"I live in a hostel alone. Internet is my only way of getting in contact with the outside world."

A young hostel resident talks about the difficulties he faces without internet access. Provision of this basic service would make a huge difference in his life Digital Rights | Thu Dec 10 2020
I live in a hostel alone, miles away from friends and family

Transcript:

I’m 18 years old and I live in a flat in a hostel. I’m on a training course 4 days a week but since lockdown everything has went online. The hostel doesn’t provide internet access. There’s a modern computer suite but they’ve closed it off because of social distancing. I’m also not allowed to make calls from the reception phone for the same reason.

I live in a hostel alone, miles away from friends and family. Internet is my only way of getting in contact with the outside world. I have to keep topping up on data, which doesn’t last very long. I am missing out on my coursework, 1-2-1 support, and Zoom calls.

I already live on very little money, and to be honest, some weeks it means having to pick between food and data.

It’s really affecting my mental health. Having internet would make my life so much easier. I could connect with people, and not have anxiety about missing my course. I see loads of people do brilliant things online – playing games with friends, their communities coming together, but there’s people like me who can’t do any of that.

We’re being left behind.