News January 14, 2018

The Herald: Urban League wins grant for mobile computer lab

Read the original article on The Herald.

By MELISSA KLARIC Herald Staff Writer Jan 14, 2018

FARRELL – Shenango Valley Urban League will soon become mobile, teaching technology to mostly seniors around the community, said Dr. Erin R. Houston, president and CEO.

The organization is one of 17 grant recipients chosen from among more than 200 eligible applicants nationwide.

The $23,000 grant is from Charter Communications as part of the inaugural Spectrum Digital Education grants.

The money will bring a mobile computer lab that will operate year-round and bring computer skills and training to people who may not have access to the internet or computers.

“This is a great opportunity for us,” Houston said. “We will focus on families and seniors.”

Houston said the urban league plans on purchasing laptops and computers and go into churches and senior centers to teach computer training.

“We’ll get around the community in Mercer County,” Houston said. “We have 11 zip codes that we’re trying to hit.”

Spectrum Digital Education is a new philanthropic initiative designed to support nonprofit organizations that educate community members on the benefits of broadband and how to use it to improve their lives.

The grants are part of an overall $1 million commitment to provide digital education in charter communities through financial grants, public service announcements, workshops and webinars to local nonprofit organizations.

“This is going to help bring a better understanding of technology to those that may not know how to use a computer, or be afraid to,” Houston said. “It will help with learning basic computer skills, resume writing, research, homework and job applications. Being mobile we will be able work with our area partners. That way if you can’t come to us, we’ll come to you.”

Charter Communications will be at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast at 8:30 a.m. Monday at the Park Inn by Radisson.