Digital Inclusion

last person joined: 5 days ago 

Help close the digital divide! Join us in supporting digital inclusion initiatives, sharing best practices, and showcasing digital inclusion programs. Digital Inclusion refers to the activities necessary to ensure that all individuals and communities, including the most disadvantaged, have access to and use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Members of this group will discuss topics related to digital inclusion including (but not limited to) digital literacy, internet access, technology for people with disabilities and older adults, and making technology more accessible.

So here we are!

  • 1.  So here we are!

    Posted Mar 19, 2020 19:12
    Hello everyone!

    I wanted to reach out to everyone in the online forum community to check in with you all. How are you? Seriously, how are you? Are you washing your hands? Are you distancing yourself socially?

    LOT has happened in the last few weeks! COVID-19 has dominated the headlines, a majority in our community are under strong quarantine/isolation guidelines, and working norms have been impacted! I understand that this is a very fast-paced, changing, and at times scary world we live in, however I want to make sure that even though the phrase "social distancing" has been (and most likely will be for a while) at the front of all of our minds, these online forums are here for you! 

    To the new folks in our community who have found and joined the NTEN community due to their work going completely remote: WELCOME!

    To the folks who have been here building the community, discussions, questions, and heart of these forums: WE LOVE YOU ALL; PLEASE CONTINUE DOING WHAT YOU ALL DO BEST!

    Please know that these forums and topic-specific communities are here for you as we all navigate this (for some) new way of working and connecting. There are some NTEN members who are online Organizers/Moderators of our NTEN Communities that already have standing monthly zoom calls that they hold for the community. How wonderful is that!? If your online community doesn't presently have a scheduled call, I'm happy to work with you and the organizer team to set up a recurring call. We need these types of online meeting spaces now more than ever! The members of our community are some of the strongest, brightest, and smartest people in their roles; it's clear that this is the place to ask a question, generate ideas, commune, uplift, and collaborate with other nonprofit tech folks.

    If there is a forum topic that you don't see currently, suggest one! If there is enough feedback from everyone, I'll gladly add it! What areas of your digital work environment aren't covered by the current forums? We're here to convene! I'll shortly be utilizing the "polls" feature to gather some feedback on what type of new communities you'd like to see here. 

    Are you new to working from home? Check out the Blog Post that our Chief Program Officer, @Ash Shepherd wrote a few days ago! He's currently hosting open office hours this week to help support those new to WFH (Working From Home).

    Indeed, it is a strange and at times surreal world we are now living in, but rest assured we're here and this community is one of the best examples of how working online can not only work, but thrive and excel!

    Lean on us and this community, we'll get through this! Share these forums as a resource to your network of colleagues who may have just discovered the acronym - WFH

    Take care of yourself, your health, and you're loved ones!

    In the spirit of community,

    Bitmoji Image

    Tristan Penn (pronouns: he/him)
    Community Engagement & Equity Manager, NTEN
    503-272-8761 | @NTENorg | Instagram: @tmp729
    picture of work desk from home with notebook, glasses, coffee, keyboard

  • 2.  RE: So here we are!

    Posted Mar 20, 2020 15:28
    Thanks for note and support Tristan!

    I've been meaning to send a note to folks on this list, especially current and former Digital Inclusion Fellows. I know right now there is a lot happening and things are changing constantly. But it makes me proud to see all the work that folks on this list have been putting in to make sure that people don't get left behind in under connected communities. And while this crisis has brought that issue to the forefront, you've been working on it for years and are now experts in that arena.

    I'm so thankful to be part of this community of digital inclusion practitioners and I'm very proud to have been a Fellow. I hope everyone is finding that the skills and knowledge that came withe the DIF especially handy during these times. I know I am. And I just wanted to say that and offer my support for folks that want to talk about what their doing, bounce ideas off of, etc. 

    In Austin, we're coordinating heavily with the City and the school district to try to the fill the gaps for low-income families that are now having to go to remote learning and support. Devices, internet and training - all three legs are being discussed and planned for. I'd love to hear what others are up to. 

    Feel free to reach out anytime! And y'all take care of yourselves. 



    (pronouns: he/him)

    picture of work desk from home with notebook, glasses, coffee, keyboard

  • 3.  RE: So here we are!

    Posted Mar 20, 2020 15:39
    I know I've definitely been thinking about my time in the DIF lately, too, Danny!

    I'm also on the NDIA listserv and learning a lot about what organizations across the country are doing to serve their community and to advocate for ISPs to provide affordable adequate Internet service. Lots of progress being made! I definitely recommend joining if you aren't on it yet. It's free. 

    In non-COVID-19 times, it's a good place to hear about research and share information on all aspects of digital inclusion. There isn't a lot about how to effectively work from home, so I'm sure we could benefit from hearing suggestions from you all on how to best accomplish that. 

    Stay safe and well, everyone!

    picture of work desk from home with notebook, glasses, coffee, keyboard

  • 4.  RE: So here we are!

    Posted Mar 20, 2020 18:39
    Danny and Leslie,
    So great to hear from both of you and to see your names on all of the listservs, calls, and other organizing that is happening.

    I definitely agree that these are such interesting times.  A double edged sword of inclusion is finally becoming a hot topic of conversation, though for very unfortunate reasons.  Seeing the community come together though to share resources, brainstorm ideas, and implement solutions is really encouraging and gives me hope for the future.  And definitely agree that NDIA is a great source of information to stay up to date with what's happening.

    As to the working from home piece, I wanted to offer a couple of resources:
    1. A blog post written by @Ash Shepherd on this exact topic
    2. Open Office Hours that NTEN is hosting so folks can exchange ideas about working from home effectively.  (We had our first one this week and it was really fantastic!)
    3. The NTEN Discuss list where lots of these conversations are happening online, as well as the brand new Working from Home forum specifically created for this purpose!

    Hope those tools are helpful to some of you.  See you all on the internet and take good care of yourselves!

    Leana Mayzlina (pronouns: she/her)
    Senior Digital Inclusion Manager, NTEN
    503-272-8743 @NTENorg

    picture of work desk from home with notebook, glasses, coffee, keyboard