Comcast brings game-changing technology to Neighborhood House
If you own a car, you might rarely think about those who don’t. Similarly, if your world is wrapped up in accessing data, researching information, and transferring documents digitally, a life without Internet access is probably unimaginable.
At Neighborhood House, where our mission is to nurture and educate children while helping families and aging adults in our community, I see the effects of having no Internet access firsthand. Witnessing the personal weight that a life void of the Internet has on our families and neighbors is punctuated even more because in today’s world, access to all things digital has become a necessity, much like electricity.
A deeper dive into the real impact felt by some community members shows that having no Internet connection brings a daily sense of hopelessness for many students and their families. But at Neighborhood House, that’s where the story changes. That’s where Comcast saw a need and filled it.
When a digital leader, such as Comcast, stepped in to provide tools community members needed, it made an instant difference in their trajectory toward success. We call that kind of partner a 360-partner that helps the community reach higher because they fill needs holistically.
Comcast’s timely contributions are making a difference in four key areas: 1. Helping kids succeed in academics, school assignments, and projects; 2. Enabling adults to search, apply for and obtain a job that will lift them higher; 3. Providing a path toward economic mobility; and 4. Breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty, which provides benefits that stretch far beyond the individual.
Our average family-of-four client earns under $36,000 annually, which makes it nearly impossible to meet even life’s basic needs. Adding the cost of technology compounds the burden of a family making it in today’s digitally connected world and plants them squarely in front of another barrier to success.
Comcast has become an amazing partner by connecting our community with reliable Internet access, but they didn’t stop there. On Oct. 12, to celebrate Comcast’s 10th anniversary of its Internet Essentials program, which helps low-income families get the internet, Comcast provided 400 computers and laptops for free to our clients. These significant contributions are a game-changer because it means our Neighborhood House community will finally have dependable tools and services to help them reach the level most Utahns enjoy every day.
Being able to access technology will allow kids to complete homework assignments, do research and accelerate their path of discovery. It will allow parents to learn technology to help their kids with school and use it for their own needs for work.
Establishing digital equity in Utah is clearly one of Comcast’s top priorities. In fact, when the pandemic hit, Comcast brought funding to help families recover. However, with a larger perspective to address needs with practical solutions, they very clearly saw the necessity for digital equity.
They funded our Lift Zone (free WiFi station) so all our community has Internet access not just our clients. Lift Zones not only help for job-seeking and schooling but also if someone needs to apply for a government program or other needs, we now introduce them to the Lift Zone where they have tools and support to access what they need.
To our surprise, they funded a computer lab and provided help to learn how to effectively operate computers. In all of this, Comcast says, “Let’s make sure people have the tools they need to use the technology we’re providing.”
We are beyond thrilled with the opportunity to provide this to our community with Comcast, our 360-partner that is making a difference one individual and one family at a time.