One Economy’s mission is to ensure that all people have access to information that can improve their lives by providing them with broadband Internet service and trustworthy sources of information.
One Economy uses three strategies to work towards this goal: it provides people access to broadband connections; trains youth Digital Connectors to teach older community members how to use computers and the Internet effectively; and educates the public on issues including health, education, financial literacy, jobs, and housing.
The Digital Connectors—community youth aged 14–21 whom One Economy trains so that they can teach their families and neighbors how to use computers and navigate the Internet—are a linchpin of these efforts. Providing access and developing educational media is not effective if people do not actually use the broadband service or visit the websites. The Digital Connectors initiative overcomes this challenge in a way that also builds community and provides the Connectors with educational and life opportunities. The Connectors complete a 156–hour training that includes modules on leadership development and financial and media literacy. They also receive a certificate of completion in Cisco’s “IT Essentials: PC hardware and software” program, a pathway towards Cisco’s A+ certification system. Moreover, as 57 percent of the Digital Connectors are female, this program helps to bring young women into the technology industry.
Symantec supports One Economy in a variety of ways. Symantec’s materials on Internet safety have been incorporated into both the Digital Connectors’ training curriculum and One Economy websites such as The Beehive. In San Francisco, Symantec sponsored an Internet safety video contest for local Digital Connectors and provided an educational scholarship to the winner. Currently, Symantec is supporting the creation of a Beehive website focused on India. This site will fill a demand for information that empowers users to improve their quality of life, including assistance on how to begin a successful job search, how to manage finances, and how to stay safe while online.
Learn more about One Economy.