In 2016, the city of Seattle’s IT Community Technology program released a Digital Equity Action Plan, which was developed in partnership with more than 100 community leaders, non-profit organizations, companies, and members of the public.
Announced this week, ten Seattle organizations will receive a total of $320,000 in Technology Matching Funds as part of that Digital Equity Initiative.
The 2016 Technology Matching Fund award recipients include:
• Children’s Home Society of Washington/North Seattle Family Center
• Coalition for Refugees from Burma
• Community & Parents for Public Schools
• El Centro de la Raza
• Full Life Care
• Multimedia Resources Training Institute
• Na’ah Illahee Fund
• New Horizons
• Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle
Digital equity seeks to ensure all residents and neighborhoods have the information technology capacity needed for civic and cultural participation, employment, lifelong learning, and access to essential services. Working toward digital equity involves intentional strategies and investments to reduce and eliminate historical barriers to access and use technology.
“Technology impacts nearly every facet of our lives, from finding jobs to thriving in school,” said city mayor, Ed Murray. “Our investment in these community driven projects will open the door to greater success for Seattleites who lack sufficient technology access and essential digital skills.”
“One of the most effective and meaningful community investments we make in this City are these technology grants,” said City Council President Bruce Harrell. “These grants help people succeed by learning skills critically necessary in the 21st century. They provide critical support where the digital divide is the greatest, to our low-income, homeless, immigrant refugee, senior and disabled residents.”
The city’s Digital Equity Initiative goals include increasing connectivity, digital skills training, and providing devices and technical support, through partnerships and community-driven solutions. They will assist more than 2,500 residents in historically underserved or underrepresented communities, including 580 immigrants and refugees, 1,240 seniors and 1,100 people with disabilities.
Seattle’s Community Technology Advisory Board selected the projects from 41 applicants though a rigorous application review process. Awardees will contribute more than $470,000 in projected community matching resources.
For more information, here’s a map of Technology Matching Fund awardees [24×7]