Editor’s note: Posts from the Community is the place for community announcements and event postings. If you have a community-oriented event you feel our readers would be interested in, please submit here.
Digital Bridge of Milwaukee was joined by state Rep. Sylvia Ortiz-Velvez, Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley and leaders from Spectrum to celebrate a major milestone in efforts to close the digital divide across Milwaukee. The partnership includes the distribution of 2,000 refurbished electronic devices since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.
Digital Bridge of Milwaukee is a nonprofit working to refurbish donated computer technology and make it available to area families in need. Its work to serve the Milwaukee community has intensified since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with more adults needing devices to work from home and students needing devices to learn remotely.
“Prior to the pandemic, we would partner with like-minded nonprofits to provide onsite training and support to their clients in need through our Bridge Milwaukee program,” said Jeff Hanson, Digital Bridge Executive Director. “When the pandemic hit, onsite trainings and equipment distributions didn’t happen like they normally would. We needed to change gears quickly to find an alternate distribution model to get our equipment out safely to those in need.”
That’s where a recent $30,000 Spectrum Digital Education grant was used to cover increased shipping and delivery costs to distribute computer devices directly to those in need in a safe manner.
Since its inception, Digital Bridge has received $87,500 from Spectrum through the Spectrum Digital Education grant program, including first-year funding that was used to support the development of the Bridge Milwaukee program.
“We’re pleased to support the valuable work Digital Bridge is doing,” said Rahman Khan, Vice President of Community Impact for Charter Communications, Inc., which operates the Spectrum brand of TV, Internet, Voice and Mobile products. “We credit them for their responsiveness to the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. They didn’t pause their program – but quickly recognized the need to pivot to provide those in need with the resources to navigate the challenges of the digital age – especially during a heightened time of need.”
Spectrum has surpassed its multi-year commitment to award $6 million in cash and in-kind donations to support broadband education across the company’s 41-state service area. Spectrum Digital Education is one of several philanthropic programs developed by Charter to support the communities in which Charter provides service and where its employees live and work. Since its inception in 2017, Spectrum Digital Education has benefitted more than 56,000 individuals in 17 states and Washington, D.C. More information on Spectrum Digital Education Grants can be found at https://corporate.charter.com/digital-education/grants.
“The last year has made digital literacy even more important in our underserved communities,” said Rep. Ortiz-Velez. “I commend Digital Bridge of Milwaukee on this important partnership and for distributing 2,000 devices during these trying times.”
To learn more about Digital Bridge or to support their continued outreach efforts, visit https://www.digitalbridge.ngo/ or contact Jeff Hanson at (608) 751-9139. To learn more about Spectrum Digital Education, visit https://corporate.charter.com/digital-education.