Healing Wings with support of Ice Wireless & Huawei Canada provide Internet-connected Mobile Devices to Emergency Shelters in Canada’s North
IQALUIT, NU, June 8th, 2021 – In an effort to continue providing support and connectivity to those most at risk during the pandemic, the Healing Wings Foundation is delighted to make a donation of Huawei tablets and laptops – powered by free and unlimited internet access from Ice Wireless – to clients at four emergency shelters.
The 25 tablets and laptops will be divided up for communal use at Kaushee’s Place, a women’s transition home in Whitehorse; Side Door, an emergency shelter in Yellowknife; YWCA Agvik Nunavut Society in Iqaluit; and Isuarsivik Regional Recovery Centre in Kuujjuaq, Northern Quebec.
“Many residents in these communities do not have access to the technology that many of us take for granted,” says Healing Wings President Mireille Dahab. “Equipment such as computers, mobile devices and tablets are needed to help facilitate connections with family and friends and enable access to important information for housing, job search, research and education.”
The Healing Wings Foundation has focused heavily on the so-called “digital divide” between Canada’s North and South. This very real disparity translates into fewer employment opportunities as well as challenges to learning, especially during this pandemic.
On top of that, a lack of connectivity and access to technology can also have more dire ramifications.
“Often women do not have access to a phone, or it is shared with their abusers,” says Healing Wings Vice-President Samer Bishay, who is also President and CEO of Ice Wireless. “Communications is important for their safety and security, as well as their ability to search for long-term accommodation, social services and support for their children.”
Dr. Ashraf Salib, also a Healing Wings Vice-President, points out that technology is vital for the youth at these shelters who are either there on their own or with their mothers.
“These laptops and tablets from Huawei – with connectivity from Ice Wireless – enable homework and research for these at-risk youths who are supposed to keep up with studies during such troubling times,” Dr. Salib says. “And with schools open only half days or not at all, the laptops and tablets help reduce the sense of isolation and helplessness.”
All the Huawei devices will be delivered in the near future to the four shelters in Iqaluit, Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Kuujjuaq, where they will be connected to Ice Wireless internet service.
“We at Huawei Canada, together with Healing Wings and Ice Wireless, believe in the power of connectivity. We also believe that every Canadian deserves access to a fast and reliable network, no matter which part or where in Canada they call home,” says Tom Wang, President of Huawei Canada. “We are proud to help our partners connect those living in rural and remote communities, bringing people together from coast to coast to coast.”