Nonprofit offers free internet access to help close digital divide for South LA students

A nonprofit is trying to close the digital divide by setting the goal of providing internet to 1,000 South L.A. families for 1,000 days.
SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The internet has allowed schools to continue teaching with remote learning during the coronavirus pandemic. But some families are dealing with slow, or even no internet.

It's a major digital divide that has come into focus, disproportionately impacting at-risk students, who are three times less likely to keep up with their school curriculum because of either poor internet, or no internet access at all.

That's where the Sola I Can Foundation has stepped in to help.

"We are intending to provide 1,000 South L.A. families with internet for 1,000 days," said Sherri Francois, the executive director of the Sola I Can Foundation.

Thanks to donors, they've nearly reached their goal of raising half a million dollars for the campaign.

"Some of our families have had to go to parking lots at retail locations like McDonald's and Target to access internet - some of our families prior to receiving internet, their kids were working off of cell phones," said Francois.

Mom Tametria Nash has four boys. Like so many low-income families, this free gift is helping to make remote learning a lot easier.

"During this pandemic, it's really rough making ends meet," said Nash. "This Wi-Fi is wonderful. It covers all the boys' four laptops; haven't had any interruptions. It's smooth, and we're happy, happy campers here."

Many of these families do receive internet hot spots from their school programs - but report slow internet speeds or limited bandwidth, which becomes an issue supporting multiple kids under one roof.

To apply, families can send an email to getwifi@solaican.org or visit 1000for1000.com.
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