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Community technology projects receive $320,000 in grants

Councilmember Bruce Harrell

Community technology projects receive $320,000 in grants
Seattle’s technology grants promote access, job skills, education, and civic engagement

Seattle – Earlier this week, the Seattle City Council approved $320,000 in matching funds to support 23 community technology projects across the City.  The grants awarded will provide vital resources for youth and families, immigrants and refugees, seniors, people with disabilities, and job seekers.  Specifically, these projects will provide neighborhoods with resources for employment training, after-school homework help, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education, community safety tools, online health information, housing information, and digital skills training for social media, audio and video production, and basic training in computer and Internet skills.

“The Technology Matching Fund is a critical partnership between the city and the community by maximizing resources to ensure that all of our residents have the tools to find jobs, students can receive after-school homework help, and communities can develop online public safety networks,” said Councilmember Bruce Harrell. “This inclusive program exemplifies the City’s commitment to Race and Social Justice by providing resources and technology access to all of our residents.”

Eight of the 23 projects awarded this year will increase the use of technology for community building and civic engagement. Twelve of the 23 projects awarded have received funding in the last five years, which will help maintain and build on current services for that community.

The Citizens’ Telecommunications and Technology Advisory Board (CTTAB) recommended these digital inclusion projects to the Mayor and Council through an open competitive application process. Grant recipients will match the city’s dollars with over $844,172 in community matching resources, including volunteer labor, professional services and donated equipment and software.

The Technology Matching Fund is managed by the Department of Information Technology’s Community Technology Program and was established in 1997 to support the community’s efforts to close the digital divide and encourage the use of information technologies for civic engagement. The city named the matching fund in memory of Bill Wright, a Central District community leader who embodied the program’s goal of using technology tools to build strong neighborhoods. Since the program began, the city has contributed over $2,150,832 to 177 projects with community contributions totaling more than $4,469,825. The fund furthers the city’s commitment to education, inclusion, and race and social justice. For more information on the Bill Wright Technology Matching Fund, visit www.seattle.gov/tech or contact communitytechnology@seattle.gov.


2011 Technology Matching Fund Projects
:

Casa Latina
Mobile Computer Lab
Build a mobile computer lab and train a team of worker-leaders and volunteers to provide basic computer and Internet training for Latino immigrants.
Award: $14,837
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Central


Coalition for Refugees from Burma

Mobile Computer Lab Expansion
Hire part-time staff to expand hours of mobile computer lab training and offer a summer computer literacy camp for newly arrived refugees from Burma.
Award: $17,750
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Southeast


Downtown Emergency Service Center

Technology Access & Literacy Enhancement
Upgrade computers at the Drop-in Center and Computer Lab serving homeless clients, and provide portable USB drives to clients enrolled in technology and job skills classes. Upgrade software to Microsoft Professional Plus so that clients can learn to use current workplace applications.
Award: $15,000
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Citywide


Ethiopian Community Mutual Association

Computer Resource Center Project
Upgrade the existing resource center with state-of-the art desktop and laptop computers and software to provide Ethiopians and Ethiopian-Americans with English and Amharic learning resources, homework help, job and Internet skills.
Award: $17,296
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Southeast


InterConnection

PC Hardware Repair Training and A+ Certification Program
Develop a three month training program in partnership with the business community that offers low income individuals job skills and life skills training, real world job experience and industry level A+ certification.
Award: $15,733
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Lake Union


Jack Straw Foundation

Language and Technology Literacy: English Language Learners
English Language Learners attending the Seattle Public Schools’ Secondary Bilingual Orientation Center will write, perform and record their own audio pieces around family and cultural traditions and community issues. Funds will also upgrade the technology in the main Jack Straw studio to provide higher quality audio and video production capacity.
Award: $19,924
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Northeast


NW Parkinson’s Foundation

Health Web Browsing Training for People Living with Parkinson’s Disease
Develop and implement six training seminars for people with Parkinson’s disease on how to use their website health resources and chat rooms, and introduce adaptive technology to aid web navigation for people with hand tremors and other motor difficulties.
Award: $5,700
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Citywide


Plymouth Housing Group

Plymouth Place Computer Resource Center Upgrade
Replace eight computers in the Computer Resource Center and expand programming to involve low income tenants in greater community awareness, problem solving and civic engagement.
Award: $3,600
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Downtown


Reel Grrls

Project Access
Upgrade media lab with voice recognition software and other adaptive equipment to expand media production training to serve teenage girls with disabilities. The project will have girls with and without disabilities work together to produce a documentary about disability access issues and programs in King County.
Award: $16,555
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Central


Salaam Urban Village Association

Technology Education Center
Provide technology training with translation support to 40 East African youth and adults. Create an ongoing digital storytelling program that records the life stories of elders in the community.
Award: $16,555
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Southeast


Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority

Building Community (Capacity) through Social Media
Educate immigrant and refugee small business owners, youth volunteers, elders and other community stakeholders in the Chinatown/International District on how to use social media to improve economic development and to increase collaboration.
Award: $17,970
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Downtown


Seattle Young People’s Project

Boot Up: Youth Organizing in the New Media
Provide a four month internship program that will prepare 15 low-income youth of color between the ages of 12 and 18 to utilize information technology and social media as tools for positive change.
Award: $15,290
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Central


SOAR

King County Youth Development Network
Improve and expand the King County Youth Development Network website, an online resource for youth development workers. Leverage use of PugetSoundOff.org.
Award: $12,200
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Citywide


SODO Business Association

SODO Interactive Website
Create an interactive website linking the SODO Business District and their diverse stakeholders, including small and large businesses, lower wage part-time employees and swing shift workers, and providing the opportunity for the people who use and travel through the area to comment and give feedback.
Award: $4,000
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Citywide


Technology Access Foundation

TechStart Columbia City 2011-12
Provide after school STEM classes for underprivileged youth in 1st through 8th grade to propel them toward academic and professional success by teaching them how to use technology and improve their academic skills.
Award: $20,000
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Southeast


The Common Language Project

Seattle Digital Literacy Initiative
Provide media literacy training in partnership with three after school programs serving diverse, low income and at risk youth in Seattle.
Award: $17,000
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Citywide


Vietnamese Friendship Association
Resource Technology Center
Create a Youth Leadership Council where 10 low income, Vietnamese immigrant and refugee youth will use technology and digital media, develop leadership skills, and engage the Vietnamese community through community service.
Award: $15,000
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Southeast


Washington CASH (Community Alliance for Self-Help)

Technology Workshops for Low Income Entrepreneurs Project
Provide 26 free business focused computer-based workshops to low income entrepreneurs to assist them start or expand small businesses.
Award: $20,000
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Southeast


West Seattle Blockwatch Captains’ Network

Online System
Develop an online system to efficiently network the Blockwatch captains in Southwest Seattle. Enable residents in areas with public safety concerns to do research and create and update their Blockwatch information online. The project will then share their lessons learned with other underserved neighborhoods to enable them to adapt the technology for their own communities.
Award: $4,000
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Southwest


Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience

Touchstones: A Walking Tour of Rainier Beach
A walking tour program will reveal the people, history and heritage of 12 locations in Rainier Beach, interacting with online content. Low income residents of color will contribute their own stories via touchstone devices with QR Codes, sparking a collective discussion of the past and present, with the ultimate goal of engaging residents in actively shaping the future.
Award: $11,910
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Southeast


Year Up Puget Sound

Closing the Opportunity Divide
Provide low-income students with technology training that will prepare them with skills necessary for entry level livable wage work, help them earn Community College credit and earn a six month internship with leading employers in the Puget Sound.
Award: $16,000
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Downtown


YMCA of Greater Seattle – Metrocenter Branch

Mapping Our Home
Provide low income, Latino and Chicano youth ages 12 -19 with technology and training to use mobile devices and PugetSoundOff.org for community-building mapping, creating digital stories, and connecting to their community.
Award: $9,680
Type: Technology Literacy and Access
District: Citywide


Youth Media Institute

Youth Out in the Community: Exploring Youth Barriers to Higher Education
Conduct a series of workshops where low income, immigrant youth ages 13-18 will learn and utilize media technologies to engage their broader community and to explore specifically the topic of “Youth Barriers to Higher Education.” Youth participants will plan and organize a multimedia community forum.
Award: $14,000
Type: Civic Engagement
District: Delridge

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