Coronavirus Hub

Join our working group

Work with other businesses to help families in hardship

Any business can join our working group, which meets virtually every 2-3 weeks. Working in collaboration with the group the CBI will be: 

  • Raising awareness of charity initiatives that need support 
  • Sharing knowledge and resources to help businesses take action to support customers 
  • Identifying issues where joint action from the business community can make a difference. 

Be part of a concerted effort to support families everywhere

Get started: actions for firms who want to help

Support your communities

Explore one of the many charity platforms bringing together offers of support with needs that are emerging across society. Here’s some to get you started:

Support those who are digitally excluded

Digital devices have become critical to our ability to maintain social contact and access information. Children away from school depend on the internet to access educational resources, and contact tracing apps are expected to play a big part in how we get out of lockdown.

Lack of digital access therefore presents challenges for the UK’s estimated 1.9 million households that do not have access to the internet. Vulnerable communities face being isolated in their homes with limited means to communicate or access information and services.

By donating tablets, smartphones, laptops, and connectivity solutions like sims and dongles, businesses can help bridge the digital divide and prevent vulnerable people from being cut off from the outside world. Find out how you can help at DevicesDotNow and

Support your customers

Businesses have been taking steps to support their customers and maintain provision of services for people facing challenges at this time. For instance, broadband firms have been removing caps on data allowances and energy providers have been ensuring that those in financial distress do not lose services.

In the coming weeks, the CBI will be bringing together resources and best practice examples to help businesses identify and find ways to support newly vulnerable customers.

Be inspired

How are other businesses stepping up?

  • TaskRabbit has created “Tasks for Good” to connect at-risk and vulnerable individuals in need of essential services to local volunteer Taskers who are donating their time and skills. 
  • STV has committed £1m of airtime to charities and businesses who are working tirelessly to sustain their organisations whilst helping the most vulnerable in our communities. They have also launched a new phase of Britain Get Talking mental wellness campaign, encouraging families and friends to reach out to loved ones. 
  • Bolton at Home is supporting staff to volunteer with NHS and local emergency response, including working with Bolton Council to rehouse the homeless, pack and distribute emergency food parcels to vulnerable residents and supporting older/vulnerable residents in the community with information and welfare phone calls. 
  • BT has removed caps on home broadband plans, capped cost on landline calls and is providing access to NHS online and 111 for free.   
  • TJ Morris has created a £30m Coronavirus Fund to financially support its staff during the outbreak. This will include paying staff in full that need to self-isolate for up to two weeks or longer. If staff do not need to self-isolate between now and December, they will be paid two weeks’ extra salary, so they do not miss out. 
  • Drax Group is delivering hundreds of laptops with internet access to schools and colleges local to its operations across Britain to ensure students can continue with their studies. 

Find out more about our work

Supporting families in hardship is part of the CBI’s Biggest Challenges Project

Supporting families in hardship is part of a wider initiative to bring businesses together to address the social and economic challenges presented by coronavirus. You may also like to get involved in our redeploying people challenge - which helps businesses redeploy staff from low to high demand sectors - and our supporting mental health challenge - which helps businesses step up to support employees and their families