Thanks to the support of the First Energy Foundation and in collaboration with the Progressive Alliance CDC, the Akron-Summit County Public Library recently launched a pilot program that lends hotspots and smartspots for use at home or on the go.
The Library Hotspots Program allows cardholders age 18 and older to borrow a free Wi-Fi device for two weeks. The hotspots and smartspots are available at the Maple Valley and Odom Boulevard branch libraries and must be returned to the lending branch.
Access to the internet and digital literacy is critical to success in school, and in seeking employment, managing personal finances, and pursuing health and wellness.
“Whether you’re a parent looking for a job, a child working on a school project, or a family looking for information on services, broadband access is no longer a luxury – it’s a necessity,” said Progressive Alliance CDC Executive Director Dr. David Nelson. “I commend both the Library and First Energy for their commitment to increasing access to technology through the Library Hotspot program, and I am thrilled to see Akron families get access to the internet so they can bridge the digital divide.”
“Lending mobile hotspots will put powerful technology into the hands and homes of our Maple Valley and Odom Blvd Library customers. It is an expansion of what the Library has provided for years – public computers and free Wi-Fi at all 19 of our locations – but with the convenience of access from home,” said Executive Director Pam Hickson-Stevenson. “We are pleased to collaborate with the Progressive Alliance CDC, First Energy Foundation, and T-Mobile on this important community initiative that promotes digital inclusion.”
In addition to providing equipment, T-Mobile played an important advisory role in setting up the program.
Progressive Alliance Community Development Corporation (PACDC) is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization that advocates and promotes Healthy Families and Healthy Communities through Economic Development, Affordable Housing, and Wellness Services for the residents and communities of Akron. PACDC home-based is West Akron, Ohio. The corporation is actively involved in economic development for urban areas, affordable housing, and wellness services which include; mental health, physical health, emotional health, and financial health. The mission of Progressive Alliance Community Development Corporation (PACDC) is to grow, enhance, and advocate for the neighborhoods and communities of West Akron by promoting healthy families and healthy communities.
Carla Davis, Marketing Communications Director