Bowling Green, Ky (May 14, 2020) – Connected Nation (CN) hit a major milestone today that demonstrates the importance of its mission during this critical time. We’re not yet through the month of May, but the nonprofit’s digital engagement numbers on its website have surpassed the total audience for all of 2019.
“This is significant because it shows that we are providing vital information that people are looking for, especially in these challenging times,” said Jessica Denson, Communications Director, CN. “Within a week of the first COVID-19 shutdowns, we were providing important resources and information that people needed access to immediately. This included, among other things, guidance on how to use telehealth, resources for low-income families and individuals who needed internet access, teleworking tips, and solutions for parents having to work with children in the home.”
CN’s mission is to provide innovative solutions that expand the access, adoption, and use of high-speed internet (broadband) and its related technologies to all people. The nonprofit’s staff has been advocating for positive change and partnerships to achieve this goal for nearly two decades.
“What has happened with the pandemic is that everyone now has a better understanding that this technology is not just a privilege, but it’s something everyone needs, like other utilities such as water or electricity,” said Denson. “We have long believed that those who are on the wrong side of the Digital Divide are being unfairly left out of a myriad of opportunities. That includes simple things like being able to apply for a job or helping your child with homework. Now, we are seeing the impact of that on a mass scale. We can no longer wait to close this gap. It must be addressed immediately, and I think most people can see how important that is now.”
Following the first closures, CN provided a coronavirus resource and response page for the public. The nonprofit then expanded those resources to include more information for low-income families and individuals and offered a series of quick-fix tips from CN’s technical experts for improving internet access in the home.
CN staff soon began to hear from state and community leaders that they were struggling to understand how to navigate the broadband landscape and effectively connect more residents and businesses in their areas. So, CN responded by developing a Community Connectivity COVID-19 Response Plan and a State Connectivity COVID-19 Response Plan that are essentially road maps to improving connectivity for a state or community.
In addition, Connected Nation Michigan (CN Michigan), a state program of CN, released a telehealth study that examined the impact and use of telehealth in rural areas and provided some insight into telemedicine at a critical time. CN also launched its podcast in late March that has been tackling issues and needs related to COVID-19 quarantines including telework, telemedicine, and improving home internet security.
If you or someone you know needs assistance or has internet or technology-related questions not yet addressed, please contact Connected Nation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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