Austin Pathways Wins Grant to Support Music Education

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

The Best Buy Foundation has awarded the Housing Authority of the City of Austin’s (HACA) nonprofit subsidiary Austin Pathways a $6,000 Community Grant to support the Digital Opportunities for Music Education program at a public housing property that serves 576 residents in southwest Austin. The funds will be used to purchase music equipment in the audio recording room at HACA’s Henry Flores Education and Training Center, a state-of-the-art facility that opened at Meadowbrook Apartments in November 2014. Grounded in Music – a local nonprofit organization whose … Read More

Google Community Leaders Help Residents Plug in to Digital Austin

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion, UT Austin News

About 20 children who live in apartments operated by the Housing Authority of the City of Austin recently received free refurbished computers donated by Austin Community College after dedicating 40 hours of their summer vacation to STEM education. Three Google Community Leaders from the University of Texas Division of Diversity and Community Engagement attended the computer deployment to help residents assemble and become acclimated to their new machines. The Division of Diversity and Community Engagement works closely with Google to support the five-student … Read More

Housing Authority Aims to Close Digital Gap

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher: Rivard Report  The San Antonio Housing Authority (SAHA) has begun work with President Barack Obama’s pilot initiative to help close the digital divide among local children and families living in federally funded public housing. ConnectHome is in 27 cities, including San Antonio, as well as in one tribal nation to speed up the implementation of broadband Internet access for residents assisted by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Read More

Promoting the Modern Lingua Franca among Austin’s Low-Income Residents

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher: UT Austin: HDO  Imagine, for a moment, that you’ve been dropped into a foreign country with absolutely no grasp of the local language or customs. You look around, cautiously observing the unusual. You want to take advantage of this unexpected situation, but you don’t have the tools or knowledge to make the most of the experience. Now, imagine being surrounded by a progressively tech-dominated society, but feeling isolated and excluded because of your lack of digital know-how. Technology may ... Read More

When It Comes to Digital Inclusion, Start Slow to Go Fast

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion

As told by Catherine Crago, Strategic Initiatives and Resource Development This week the White House and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s ConnectHome initiative will host a webinar for participating cities to share what they are learning as they convene stakeholders in their cities to bridge the digital divide. Austin Pathways’ Unlocking the Connection program is credited as a model for other programs; we were pleased to share the Austin experience at the White House in August. Our approach … Read More

It Takes a Village to Bridge the Digital Divide

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion

As told by Sylvia Blanco, HACA Executive Vice President Earlier this week, KXAN reported on U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julian Castro’s visit to the Reimagining Cities conference. Recently, we met with Castro at the first convening of a HUD and White House initiative called ConnectHome, a program in which we serve as a Mentor City for 28 participating communities. Reflecting on our journey over the last nine months, we’d like to share a few lessons … Read More

Digital Inclusion Initiative Update

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher: John Speirs, Office of Telecommunications & Regulatory AffairsThis memo provides an update on implementation of the Digital Inclusion Initiative Strategic Plan and supporting programs funded by the Grant for Technology Opportunities Program (GTOPs). The Digital Inclusion Steering Committee | Providing Direction for the Strategic Plan The community-wide effort to support digital inclusion in Austin, Texas is an engaging and collaborative initiative. The Austin City Council reaffirmed its support when it approved the Digital Inclusion Strategic Plan on November 20, ... Read More

About the National Housing Conference

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher:The National Housing Conference represents a diverse membership of housing stakeholders including tenant advocates, mortgage bankers, non-profit and for-profit home builders, property managers, policy practitioners, real estate professionals, equity investors, and more, all of whom share a commitment to safe, decent and affordable housing for all in America. We are the nation’s oldest housing advocacy organization, dedicated to the affordable housing mission since our founding in 1931. As a nonpartisan, 501(c) 3 nonprofit, we are a research and education resource ... Read More

Austin a Tech Mentor

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher:Earlier this month, President Barack Obama and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced a new pilot program meant to close the gap between those online and those left out when it comes to Internet access, largely due to expense. The plan, called ConnectHome, attempts to deliver high-speed, affordable broadband to low-income public housing residents. Supported by corporations, nonprofits, and local governments, the initiative is slated to launch in 28 communities across the nation and reach 200,000 households. "Just because you don't have ... Read More

Austin Housing Authority Digital Inclusion Program Selected by HUD to Mentor Other Cities Across the U.S.

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Lourdes Castro Ramirez today  highlighted the HACA and the City of Austin’s designation as a peer mentor to 28 communities participating in the ConnectHome initiative to extend affordable broadband access to families living in HUD-assisted housing. ConnectHome was recently unveiled by HUD Secretary Julián Castro and the Obama Administration. Work locally will be led by Austin Pathways. “It is so important that every child be given the same opportunities to build a brighter future and achieve their dreams,” Castro Ramirez said. “That’s … Read More

U.S. Program Will Connect Public Housing Residents to Web

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher:The Obama administration on Wednesday announced a program to connect thousands of public housing residents across the nation to the Internet at low prices or free, part of a broader effort to close the so-called digital divide and help low-income Americans succeed in a technology-driven society. Read More

Google offers free Fiber internet in public housing

Andrea GallowayUncategorized

Publisher: FortuneGoogle will bring free high-speed internet to public housing projects in select cities, as part of a larger initiative by the Obama Administration to ensure low-income Americans are not left behind in an era when more and more everyday tasks require getting online. “Today, in all of our Google Fiber markets, we’re launching a program to connect residents in select public and affordable housing properties for $0/month with no installation fee,” Google announced on its Fiber blog. Read More

Austin Pathways Pilots Computer Refurbishing Program

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion, UT Austin News

Growing up in Kerala, India, Austin Pathways volunteer Unni Krishnan learned the value of reuse at an early age – and a documentary he saw while studying computer engineering at the University of Texas on sustainability made a strong impression. “I always question the need to upgrade. I use an old phone with limited capabilities, but it has everything I need,” Krishnan said. “The same is true for almost everyone. If you don’t have the money to buy a $300 … Read More

Rachel Martinez Named TX NAHRO Resident of the Year

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion

Unlocking the Connection spokesperson Rachel Martinez was recently recognized as the 2015 Texas National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) Resident of the Year for a large housing authority during the TX NAHRO 39th Annual Conference and Tradeshow in Austin, Texas. The Resident of the Year award honors individuals who live in public housing, participate in a rental assistance program or are served by a community development agency. Martinez was nominated for the award for demonstrating leadership, commitment, dedication and … Read More

Students Become Teachers in Austin Pathways’ Tech Starters Class

Andrea GallowayDigital Inclusion

Even the most technologically savvy person can learn something new each time they use a computer and connect to the Internet. At the graduation of the second Tech Starters cohort at Meadowbrook Apartments this week, Google Fiber Austin Community Impact Manager Parisa Fatehi-Weeks shared she recently learned how she could use Google Docs to help her mother, whose first language is Farsi, write and edit an important letter in English. “For years, I’ve been helping her write letters, but I’d … Read More