Most of us use the internet countless times a day. Every morning I use Google Maps to check which bus lines I should take to work, and every evening I check my bank account online. It still amazes me I can talk face to face with my niece and nephew living in London, and see the school projects they create 3,000 miles away...But there are still millions of Americans who don't have regular access to these life changing resources.
And that's a problem. My coworker's been in line at Shaws and Panera when someone walked in asking to fill out a job application and was told 'sorry you have to do that online.' Now imagine you don't have a computer or internet access at home, so you need to go to a library to create a resume, search for jobs, and submit applications. If you've never done that before, it can be incredibly intimidating even to figure out where to start. And if it's a busy time at the library, you're limited to 30 mins or an hour before having to stop and start again later. And then it closes at 5; what do you do after that?
In response to this paralyzing situation, Tech Goes Home works with schools and community organizations to connect people with low cost computers and internet access, while teaching how to use the internet to do things like communicate with family or find a job, sign up for food stamps - do the things that are basic but powerful. One of our classes included a lot of Somali families, who showed their children the villages where they grew up for the first time using the satellite feature on Google Maps. What was just a transportation app for me became a way for a mother to show her child about her heritage and very identity as a person. We believe that using the internet is more than just connecting to information; it connects people to family, jobs, education - it opens up a world of opportunity. TGH volunteers help people learn how to use internet resources, so they walk away from a TGH class feeling as confident as possible to experience and participate in the modern world.
Mission: Tech Goes Home teaches underserved citizens how to use online resources to improve their life, provides discounted hardware, and connects them to low-cost Internet.
Address: 1 City Hall Square, Boston, MA, United States