Comcast has announced it has awarded $25,000, provided 100 laptops and installed a Lift Zone to support the Chickahominy Indian Tribe with free, high-speed WiFi to help its tribal citizens with digital literacy and skills training. These donations are part of Project UP, Comcast’s $1 billion commitment to advance digital equity through programs and community partnerships that connect people to the Internet, advance economic mobility, and open doors for the next generation of innovators, entrepreneurs, storytellers and creators.
This is an incredible day for our tribe,” said Chickahominy Indian Tribe’s Second Assistant Chief Reggie Stewart. “Many of our tribal citizens – especially our seniors – are not comfortable with technology. The combination of digital skills training, laptops and a Lift Zone with free, high-speed Internet access in our Tribal Center to keep us all more connected is a dream come true. We thank Comcast for its commitment to our tribe, our community and bridging the digital divide in rural Virginia.”
CodeVA, a Richmond-based non-profit that provides computer science education, and that also partners with the Virginia Tribal Education Consortium (VTEC), will use the $25,000 grant to teach senior tribal citizens the digital literacy skills needed to stay connected and succeed in today’s digital world. Improving digital readiness has many benefits from increased ability to connect vital services like healthcare, search for jobs or simply to use the Internet to connect with family.
We are thrilled to have the opportunity to provide digital skills training to the senior tribal citizens of the Chickahominy Indian Tribe,” said Chris Dovi, Executive Director with CodeVA. “We have a shared mission with Comcast to bridge the digital divide in Virginia – and this investment will take our efforts to the next level.”
Comcast is deeply committed to advancing digital equity in the communities it serves, including through rural broadband expansion along with initiatives and investments in Charles City County and throughout Virginia. In 2021, Comcast completed an expansion in Charles City County through a Virginia Telecommunication Initiative (VATI) grant that brought its service to an additional 2,300 homes and businesses across the County. The company’s community partnerships in Virginia have totaled $43.6 million in cash and in-kind contributions to more than 120 local non-profits in the last three years. This investment includes the installation of 14 Lift Zones across Virginia that provide free, high-speed WiFi service to local community centers. The Chickahominy Indian Tribe Lift Zone will provide Gig speed Internet access to all tribal citizens.
As we embark on Native American Heritage Month, it’s imperative that we continue to accelerate digital adoption and literacy skills development for everyone,” said Dalila Wilson-Scott, Executive Vice President & Chief Diversity Officer, Comcast Corporation and President, Comcast NBCUniversal Foundation. “Through the efforts announced today and ongoing investments to bring broadband to more Virginians, Comcast is thrilled to strengthen our partnership with the Chickahominy Indian Tribe and connect more tribal citizens to free and affordable Internet options and digital skills development.”
Added Michael Parker, Senior Vice President for Comcast’s Beltway Region, “Bridging the digital divide requires public-private partnerships and we are thrilled to be working with CodeVA to ensure the Chickahominy Indian Tribe citizens can participate in today’s digital economy and stay connected to friends and family. This is a great example of Comcast’s commitment to local communities beyond the build.”
Comcast is also helping to drive awareness and adoption of the Federal Government’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which provides eligible low-income households with a credit of up to $30 per month toward their Internet and/or mobile service – $75 per month on tribal lands. Thanks to ACP, eligible Comcast customers can get home Internet either through Comcast’s Internet Essentials or Internet Essentials Plus at no cost once the Federal credit is applied. Internet Essentials customers can also add a line of unlimited 5G cellular data ($45) through Xfinity Mobile for as little as $24.95/month after the ACP benefit is applied.
For additional information on Project UP and Comcast’s digital equity initiatives, visit https://corporate.comcast.com/impact/project-up.