As part of its ongoing commitment to help connect low-income families to the internet so they can fully participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy, Comcast today announced plans to equip 25 different Connecticut locations – 13 of which are now open with plans for 12 additional sites.
Working with its network of nonprofit partners, Comcast "Lift Zones" feature free WiFi, which allows students to work on laptops simultaneously so they can successfully participate in distance learning. This initiative provides free connectivity inside partner community centers, like the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hartford, for the next three years.
Comcast also partnered with Connecticut State Senator Douglas McCrory and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hartford to host a Digital Connectivity Forum on April 15, 2021 that examined broadband adoption in the city of Hartford. Residents attending the event learned how they can access the internet by taking advantage of social outreach programs and community-based partnerships, in addition to learning more about Comcast's Internet Essentials program, a low-cost broadband adoption program that provides Internet for $9.95/month.
"The Boys & Girls Club of Hartford is pleased to welcome Comcast's Lift Zones to our Asylum Hill location as part of our collective effort to ensure that families, regardless of income, are connected to the digital world," said Samuel Gray, President & CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of Hartford.
State Senator Douglas McCrory helped to lead the Digital Connectivity Forum in effort to help even more Hartford residents access the Internet, which has become especially vital during this ongoing pandemic.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of a family having high-speed Internet service to complete daily tasks and activities. Even more, the tools that will help a student finish a science project or a parent who is searching for a new job should not be out of reach due to unaffordability," said State Senator Doug McCrory. "Affordable, reliable Internet service is key to meeting the needs of all members of a household. I appreciate the opportunity to co-host a space for families to learn about Internet Essentials, an available low-cost program provided by Comcast, and to join in the launch announcement of community spaces where students can connect to the Internet in a safe, learning environment."
Lift Zone sites complement Comcast's Internet Essentials program, which has helped connect a cumulative total of more than 10 million low-income people to the Internet at home since 2011, including 176,000 individuals in the state of Connecticut.
"We are proud to partner with community organizations across Connecticut and equip them with fast WiFi service to provide kids with safe and reliable connectivity to learn, keep up with school and expand their educational opportunities," said Dennis Mathew, Senior Vice President of Comcast's Western New England Region. "We believe that these Lift Zones will provide another choice and make it convenient for folks to connect at a trusted local nonprofit location."
The 13 Comcast Lift Zone sites that are now open in Connecticut include:
- Center for Latino Progress – Hartford
- Asylum Hill Boys & Girls Club – Hartford
- Literacy Volunteers of Greater Hartford
- Leadership, Education and Athletics in Partnership (LEAP) – New Haven
- Youth Continuum – 3 locations in New Haven
- New Haven Boys & Girls Club
- Music Haven – New Haven
- Boys & Girls Club of Bristol
- Opportunities Industrialization Center of New Britain
- Girls Inc. of Western Connecticut – Waterbury
- Town of Falls Village Social Services Office
Twelve (12) additional Comcast Lift Zone sites in Connecticut are currently being installed with plans to open by late spring.