Digital literacy made possible through Let’s Get Together and Rogers Connected for Success™
Alison Canning remembers the “lightbulb moment” that shifted the direction of Let’s Get Together, a Toronto-based non-profit organization with a mission to make learning equitable and education accessible. Canning, the organization’s Executive Director, was in the middle of a backpack fundraising drive when she had a conversation with a grade 12 student.
“As we were stuffing backpacks for back-to-school, I learned that this student, who was in her last year of high school, was doing homework assignments on her phone as she didn’t have access to the internet or a computer at home,” says Canning. “A phone simply wasn’t going to cut it as she pursued post-secondary scholarships and summer jobs – and certainly wouldn’t help her thrive at university or college. She deserved better tools to help her succeed.”
From that conversation, Canning and Let’s Get Together refocused their mission to meet digital literacy and connectivity needs by helping close the technology gap to enable life-long learners to discover their greatest potential.
Let’s Get Together launched a program with the support of their Youth Ambassadors called LGT-Tech4All, which has provided more than a thousand refurbished donated computers to students and individuals in need across Ontario, further bridging the digital divide. Their future plans include setting up LGT-Tech4All Hubs across Canada with the support of their youth-led groups Tech4All Youth and Edutechconnect, so communities will have the tools and means to address the lack of technology themselves.
“Today, the Internet is critical to staying connected but unfortunately, not every student or family is able to participate,” says Sarah Singh, an LGT-Tech4All Youth Ambassador and student at Guelph-Humber University’s social work program. “We have a collective responsibility to help bridge the digital divide for youth and their families by providing equal access to technology and affordable internet.”
To bring the technology tools to life, Let’s Get Together became a partner agency with Rogers Connected for Success™ program, helping families across Ontario sign up for the company’s low-cost high-speed internet that is available to Ontarians receiving income support through Ontario Works, Ontario Disability Support Program, the maximum child care benefit, residents in rent-geared-income housing, and seniors receiving the guaranteed income supplement.
“When students receive their own computer – and it’s really theirs – it sends a strong message,” says Canning. “You don’t just own the computer, you own your education and your own future. A computer and Internet access is their best shot for success and opening up their world.”
Working together with community partners like Let’s Get Together, Rogers is committed to helping bridge the digital divide through Connected for Success, which is currently available to upwards of 750,000 Canadians in Rogers internet coverage area in Ontario, New Brunswick and Newfoundland.The program also offers speed tiers to support the evolving connectivity needs of Canadians.
To find out how to help someone in need of access to technology, visit lettogether.ca or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Rogers Connected for Success and to see if you are eligible, please visit: www.connectedforsuccess.ca or speak with one of our representatives by calling 1-866-689-0758, Monday-Friday 9am-6pm ET or Saturday-Sunday 9am-5pm ET.