I’m thrilled, shocked, overwhelmed…the list goes on…as today it was announced in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List that I have been awarded an OBE.
But most importantly I’m proud. I’m proud of the thousands of people this award also belongs to, who have all contributed to eradicating the digital inequalities in our country so that millions of people can live a better life.
I wish I could name every single person: the 5,000 hyperlocal partners in the UK online centres network, whose dedication often humbles me; the hard-working and happy 46-strong team at Tinder Foundation; the amazing Jim Knight (Tinder Foundation’s Chair) and all our committed Board who have provided so much friendship, guidance and support; and of course my family and friends.
This award really does belong to everyone who has worked tirelessly to reduce the inequalities in our country by helping others to benefit as part of our digital society. We’ve all done something to make a difference, and I know we’ll keep on going because it matters more than ever.
Now that it’s sinking in, this award has given me a push to do even more because 9.5 million (the number of adults in the UK who don’t or can’t use the internet) isn’t a figure I’m happy – or proud about – at all. In fact I hate it, and I want to keep reducing that figure until I can write on here one day that we have achieved a truly digital nation.
I’m going to take the weekend off to keep feeling happy and feeling proud of my part in this story. But on Monday I will be back, with ever more determination to work with anyone who wants to help to end digital inequality once and forever.