STEM programs, community radio stations, English language and literacy training, job finding assistance, expanding and upgrading computer labs for disadvantaged kids and low-income seniors, the recipients of the 2015 Technology Matching Funds grants have projects as diverse as their backgrounds.
Part of Seattle’s commitment to digital equity, the Technology Matching Fund provides grants annually up to $30,000 for technology projects. City dollars are matched by the community’s contribution of volunteer labor, materials, professional services, or cash. The next grant deadline will be in March, 2016. The Technology Matching Fund seeks to improve digital equity by connecting populations that have limited access to technology, empowering residents with digital literacy skills, building capacity for diverse communities to use technology for civic participation.
This year the City awarded grants to 22 local nonprofit groups. Some projects include:
- The Big-Brained Superheroes Club will provide a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) program for youth from Yesler Terrace, ages 8 and up.
The Coalition for Refugees from Burma will use the funds to purchase new laptops and provide basic computer literacy courses for newly arrived refugee adults, conduct trainings for parents of school aged youth to support their children’s education, and offer enrichment programs to engage youth with high-tech concepts and careers.
Seattle’s Millionair Club plans to expand the current computer lab from 8 workstations to 32 to become a Workforce Development site and provide job safety training, financial literacy, and online educational opportunities.
Sound Care Child Solutions wants to provide tablets for classrooms in 30 Sound Child Care Centers and train teachers how to use them, share with parents on devices, and translate into the home language of the family.
If you have a local nonprofit and want more information on Technology Matching Funds grant you can go to the Community Technology website, read Brainstorm e-zine or follow Community Technology on Facebook or Twitter @diginclusion. This year half of the recipients had never received grants before. Maybe you can be one of the many success stories.
Best of luck to all of the nonprofit recipients. We look forward to seeing the lives you enriched through your programs.