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April 14, 2015

Advancing digital literacy in Kansas City

  • , community impact

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From helping job-seekers expand their digital skills to teaching seniors how to email long-distance relatives, organizations in Kansas City are finding new ways to show residents why the Internet matters. We know that access to the Internet can have a transformative impact on people’s lives. So last year, the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, which is supported by Google Fiber and five other partners, announced the Kansas City Digital Inclusion Fund to support organizations advancing digital literacy in the local community.

Today, the Digital Inclusion Fund is making its second round of grants to six groups that are kicking digital literacy efforts into high gear. With today’s awards, the Digital Inclusion Fund has contributed more than $430,000 to digital literacy projects since it made its first grants in 2014. The organizations receiving grants to grow their digital literacy programs this year are:

Connecting for Good
Hispanic Economic Development Corporation
Kansas City Public Library
Literacy Kansas City
Trinity Community Church / Shepherd’s Center

Many of these organizations are two-time recipients of Digital Inclusion Fund grants—and over the last year, they’ve demonstrated the tremendous value they bring to Kansas City. ArtsTech has trained teenagers as Digital Connectors who have taught more than 250 seniors how to get online. Last year, Connecting for Good refurbished nearly 1,000 computers and provided them to the community at an affordable price. Kansas City Public Library introduced new technologies to the more than 2,000 students who have visited the library’s open-door Digital Media Lab.

Digital literacy training at the Trinity Community Church

We’re also delighted to welcome the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation as a supporter of the Digital Inclusion Fund. In keeping with its mission to promote educational achievement and entrepreneurial success, the Kauffman Foundation will join Google Fiber, Sprint, The Illig Family Foundation, Polsinelli, Global Prairie and JE Dunn Construction in supporting the third round of grants next year.

The web holds unlimited possibilities for the Kansas City community, and we’re looking forward to seeing how this year’s grantees help residents unlock that potential. Organizations interested in applying for the next round of grants can learn more from the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, and look out for the next round of applications in August 2015.