United Way of Pioneer Valley Launches Digital Inclusion Initiative, Seeks Donated Laptops
Springfield, MA (
The pilot is an initiative of an advisory committee, including:
- The Greater Holyoke Chamber of Commerce
- Northeast IT
- Kevin McCaffery of Mt. Holyoke College
- Sean Fitzgerald of South Hadley Electric Light
- Leslie Hennessy of South Hadley Council on Aging
Jordan Hart, executive director of the Greater Holyoke Chamber of Commerce, shared “The Greater Holyoke Chamber is thrilled to join this initiative, led by the United Way of Pioneer Valley. The pandemic has illustrated how we must be more tech-inclusive, but this is not a new need for our community. It’s great to work with so many partners who understand that in our heavily digitized world there is a need, a demand, to provide digital equity to families and individuals in our neighborhoods.”
One Greater Holyoke Chamber member on the advisory committee, major sponsor Northeast IT of West Springfield will provide storage space and wiping services on donated devices along with monetary support.
“We’re proud to be part of the UWPV’s Digital Inclusion program and we believe in the mission of the organization and this initiative. Northeast IT will be participating in the DI program by donating laptops and working to prepare computers to be used by program members.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted both the necessity of technology and digital literacy tools, and the barriers to these resources that our community face. This is especially true for Hampden County. In the Holyoke/Springfield area alone, nearly 40% of residents lack a desktop or laptop, and nearly 30% of residents lack the financial means to acquire such systems. Your unused devices can become a person in need’s path to success in our highly-digital world,” said Paul Mina, President & CEO, United Way of Pioneer Valley.
Starting in late summer/early fall, our clients will receive laptops and personal training in using these systems, including startup, word processing, and performing tasks on the internet, such as email and applying to work.
Donated laptops should have at least an Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 3 processor, 8 GB of RAM, and a 256 GB solid-state drive. We also request that systems have a power supply with cord and a functional battery.
Learn more about the Digital Inclusion Program and how to donate a device at uwpv.org/digital-inclusion.