We are not only connecting you to the digital world, but we are connecting people to people.

Diana Flores, CTIC American Connection Corps fellow, and Executive Director of ConectandoUs, reflects on the first CTIC Chromebook distribution event and looks forward to an upcoming Chromebook event and future community partnerships. 

On December 19, 2023, we partnered with Find Your Purpose for our first Chromebook computer distribution event. At this event, we put computers in the hands of 70 Carroll County households, as well as connected them to digital skills and Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) resources!

We were touched to see so many smiling faces and hear the importance of a new computer and these resources to recipients. People at looking for online jobs, families new to the country and the resources that live online, college students who had been doing all their schoolwork on their phone – and many more – received computers they can keep forever.

The power of a personal device for these individuals and their households is undisputedly valuable. According to research done by the University of California, Santa Barbara ownership of a device with a large screen (ie laptop, desktop) “provides a unique computing experience that cannot be replicated through public use of computers or shared devices”. With a personal device, users can navigate internet services and store data – without the restrictions of public spaces and shared devices. The possession of a computer, for all of us, is a connection to our increasingly digital world, and an invitation for full participation in the community, their personal development, and their professional development.

On January 15, 2024, we are partnering with Expanding Boundaries International to distribute Chromebooks at their MLK Day Family Learning Experience. On January 23, 2024, we are partnering with Mulligan Recovery Centers to host an ACP Sign-Up and Chromebook Distribution event.

Carroll County has been given the opportunity to grow through the ACP registration and Chromebook distribution events.

ACP is a Federal Communications Commision (FCC) benefit program that helps ensure that households can afford the broadband they need for work, school, healthcare and more, by providing a monthly discount of internet service for eligible households.

We are able to distribute free Chromebooks for eligible households because of a grant awarded to the Carroll County Government and the Carroll Technology and Innovation Council by the state of Maryland.

When you attend one of our events, you step into a community-driven space where friendly faces are ready to guide you through understanding some of the resources that are available to you. The abundance of resources may feel overwhelming, but we want you to know that questions are not just welcomed but encouraged. Our commitment to empowering individuals goes beyond technology, it’s about ensuring that everyone feels supported and equipped to navigate the ever-evolving digital world.

As we reflect on past events and envision future ones, we recognize progress happens through collaboration. Our gratitude extends to our community partners and individuals who have helped us in our mission of “Moving Carroll Forward!” Every Facebook event share and conversation with a group is greatly appreciated.

Now, the CTIC asks you, what is your dream for your community, your family, and yourself?  Consider the role that connectivity will play in shaping these aspirations and share your thoughts with us!

If you are interested in a new community partnership with the Carroll Technology and Innovation Council, you can connect with me, Diana Flores, at diana@carrolltechcouncil.org or info@carrolltechcouncil.org today!

© 2023 Carroll Technology Council | 443.244.1262
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