From September 2010 through December 2012, OneCommunity’s Connect Your Community Project (“CYC 1.0”) provided free broadband training, low-cost equipment, support, and affordable Internet to low-income residents of Northeast Ohio, Detroit, Appalachian Ohio, Winston-Salem, Lexington ( KY) and Bradenton (FL).
The CYC Project enabled more than 25,000 citizens of these communities to start using broadband to:
- Advance careers and financial opportunities,
- Connect with colleagues, family, and friends,
- Expand educational horizons,
- Access health care and government services.
The CYC Project’s fifteen community partners and ninety “Connect Your Community Corps” members followed a simple, high-touch model to help local residents cross the digital divide and become “sustainable broadband adopters”:
- Participants gained and upgraded their computer skills through CYC’s free training.
- Participants had the opportunity to equip their homes with extremely affordable refurbished computers.
- Participants were helped to find affordable high-speed Internet access.
- Participants received one-on-one assistance to find the online resources they need the most.
CYC was funded through a three-year, $18.7 million economic stimulus grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce — one of the largest broadband adoption initiatives supported by the Department’s Broadband Technologies Opportunities Program.
After serving over 33,000 individuals and helping over 25,000 with home internet access and computers, Federal funding for Connect Your Community training ended in December 2012.
“Connect Your Community Corps” members and partner agency staff gathered in June 2011 at the Community Broadband Adoption, Impact & Sustainability Conference.