Temple University recently opened its Digital Equity Center to provide residents of the area around North Philadelphia with access to computers, technology support and free digital literacy education.
The project aims to recycle old university computers so that members of the local community can access them from eight nearby zip codes. The center has a computer lab, classrooms and multipurpose rooms, which are open to the public and will provide job training and career preparation programs. Using funds from Temple Dale Technologies, the center plans to build a community help desk and digital navigator office to help people use renewed technology. The center has already distributed more than 200 of the 600 computers and laptops it plans to distribute to community members by the end of the year.
“We are committed to bridging the digital divide in North Philadelphia,” Temple Provost Gregory Mandel said in a press release. “Through this new center, we can ensure that children can continue their school work. We will be able to help their parents get free continuing education. And, perhaps most importantly, we will be able to bring families together to enjoy cultural events, workshops and concerts on their computers, tablets and phones. “