Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

Comcast connects neighborhood community centers


Comcast connects neighborhood community centers
At the height of the pandemic, Comcast launched its Lift Zone program to provide free WiFi inside neighborhood community centers to students who were unable to participate in remote education at home.

In the Twin Cities, we collaborated with The Sanneh Foundation, an organization that has been empowering youth for more than 20 years through educational after-school and summer programming, to install free WiFi at its Conway Center in 2020. It was Comcast's first Lift Zone in the United States.

Later, in 2021, after The Sanneh Foundation was forced to close due to a devastating fire, our teams worked quickly to install free WiFi at a second location so that the families and students could stay connected. This new location, The Sanneh Foundation's Seton Center, also marked our programme's 1,000th Lift Zone milestone.

Partnerships with community-based organisations are at the heart of our $1 billion Project UP initiative to advance digital equity and help create a world of limitless possibilities. Despite the fact that almost all schools have returned to in-person classes, there is still a need for community learning spaces with free WiFi where people can learn digital skills or even receive one-on-one technical support or instruction.

As a result, we're going above and beyond by supporting an AmeriCorps Community Technology Empowerment Program (CTEP) member at The Sanneh Foundation. This dependable local resource, known as a digital navigator, will broaden the scope of digital literacy skills classes offered to youth, assist seniors in connecting with loved ones, and assist community residents with job searches and application submissions.

Students will be able to improve their computer skills, which will lead to higher paying jobs and careers in technology, thanks to Comcast's support, and the digital navigator will be available to senior community members who want basic instruction on how to set up computers, create email accounts, and even connect with their grandchildren.
TONY SANNEH – Founder, CEO, The Sanneh Foundation

Furthermore, we are assisting the St. Paul Neighborhood Network (SPNN), the local Twin Cities organisation that manages AmeriCorps' CTEP, by providing operational and member support funding. This builds on our nationwide effort to establish and scale a network of digital navigators who are trained to assist people in learning how to connect to the internet, use devices, and develop digital skills.

Digital navigators are essential for closing the digital divide and reducing socioeconomic disparities. According to a Boston Consulting Group study funded by Comcast, with the assistance of these digital case workers, Internet usage increased significantly, access to basic needs such as healthcare increased, and one in every three users found a new job or earned a higher income.

There has never been a greater need for connectivity. We can help close the homework gap, advance economic mobility, and achieve digital equity by collaborating with partners like The Sanneh Foundation and SPNN to increase broadband adoption.

Comcast Twin Cities Region Senior Vice President

Years of experience have taught us that no single company, nonprofit, or government program can ever close the digital divide on its own. As a result, Comcast collaborates with thousands of local community-based organizations such as The Sanneh Foundation and SPNN. We have a mutual and deep commitment to coalition building because we know that by working together, we can achieve long-term and meaningful change.