Can these 8 projects help squash Philly's digital divide? - Technical.ly Philly

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Jun. 12, 2017 12:51 pm

Can these 8 projects help squash Philly’s digital divide?

The first official move from the Digital Literacy Alliance is giving these nonprofits $167,010 in grant funding.

At a PhillyCAM event during Philly Tech Week 2017 presented by Comcast. The org snatched $15,000 in grant money.

(Photo by Roberto Torres)

Can money be the much-needed catalyst to help Philadelphians outside the digital space have greater access to technology?

The first move from the Digital Literacy Alliance — a newly formed 19-organization collective backed by the Mayor’s Fund — seems to think it’s a good place to start: the initiative just gave $167,010 in grant money to eight nonprofits for projects in the digital literacy space.

From workshops to spot fake news (Mighty Writers’ winning proposal) to tablet training sessions for senior citizens (by nonprofit Generations Online), the first round of projects looks promising. Also of note is PhillyCAM’s “intergenerational, hands-on fellowships in media literacy.”

Our sister site Generocity has the scoop.

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“These grants allow the City to build on existing digital literacy initiatives, such as KEYSPOT, by giving organizations further opportunities to develop creative programs in their neighborhoods,” Andrew Buss, innovation director for the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Innovation & Technology, said in a statement. “We have a nice mix of organizations and ideas in our first granting cycle.”

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The telling word from Buss’ statement is “cycle” — the Alliance’s push to back a series of projects in Philly is where the most potential for long-term impact lies. As these projects start to take shape, check back for our report on how these resources are put to use.

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Roberto Torres

Roberto Torres became Technical.ly Lead Philly Reporter in May 2016. Prior, he was a freelance contributor to Technical.ly and Al Dia News. The native Venezuelan moved to Philadelphia in 2015 after reporting on research at his alma mater, the University of Zulia. Whenever he's not fencing deadlines, he can be found standing in line at Overbrook Pizza in West Philly, running Netflix/Hulu marathons with his wife or reading news from Venezuela.

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