(PRESS RELEASE)_(West Palm Beach, FL) - Gulfstream Goodwill Industries (GGI), the largest provider of health and human services in the five Florida counties it serves, is pleased to announce its partnership with Many Homes Freedom Project, an organization committed to bridging the digital divide for low-income, disabled, student and homeless populations with their partner Emerald Coast Wireless LLC, (ECW) a nationwide distributor of the 8 to 10-inch tablets. The collaboration kicked off this summer, serving GGI's low-income employees and aims to provide free computer tablets connected to complimentary broadband service (data through ESIM), empowering individuals to access essential online resources through the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). Recipients will never have to search for WI-FI again to go online. Approximately 650 tablets will be distributed, worth $65,000.
The digital divide is the gap between those with access to computers/tablets and the internet and those without. The ACP is a U.S. government program run by the Federal Communications Commission and funded by USAC to help low-income households pay for internet service and connected devices like laptops or tablets. The program helps ensure families can afford the broadband they need for work, school, healthcare and more, as there is never a monthly fee and it is not based on credit.
“For over 50 years, Gulfstream Goodwill Industries has been at the forefront of providing employment, training and housing opportunities in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River and Okeechobee Counties,” said President and CEO Keith Kennedy. “Bridging the technological divide for individuals overcoming employment barriers has the power to change lives. We are proud to partner with a like-minded organization making a strong impact on our most vulnerable neighbors.”
Gulfstream Goodwill Industries is also the largest homelessness provider in its five-county region. GGI changes lives through employment, training and housing while assisting people with disabilities and other employment barriers to become self-sufficient, working members of the South Florida community.
Through its partnership with GGI, Many Homes Freedom Project, in conjunction with ECW of Pensacola, Florida, and North American Local, the ACP licensed provider, will be servicing the GGI Communities with tablets and no-cost monthly service through their non-profit partner's assistance for all those in need. Many Homes Freedom Project will distribute free computer tablets with a one-year warranty for hassle-free replacements to those who qualify. The broadband and data service provided by the ACP will help ensure the program's connectivity longevity for our recipients. Led by Congressman Brian Mast, Many Homes Project will schedule visits to all GGI locations to personally assist guests, participants and staff with the registration process.
“GGI and Many Homes Freedom Project's collaboration exemplifies our shared commitment to addressing the digital divide and empowering vulnerable populations,” said CEO of Many Homes Freedom Project Lamont DeVon Artis II. “By equipping individuals with the necessary tools and connectivity, this partnership seeks to foster equal access to education, employment opportunities and essential resources. Once registered, individuals can expect to receive their ordered tablet within 10 days from approval of FCC."
GGI’s goal is to implement this program across its various facilities, including shelters, Adult Day Training centers, its Career Academy of the Palm Beaches, all 26 retail stores and for staff at their distribution centers in Fort Pierce and Lake Worth. Offering one device per household, the organization estimates a distribution of nearly 650 tablets, with no limit on the number of tablets requested after approval.
Individuals are likely eligible if their household income is below 200% of the Federal Poverty Line or if the individual or someone they live with currently receives a government benefit like SNAP, Medicaid, SSI, WIC, Pell Grant, or free and reduced-price lunch.
Many Homes Freedom Project Corp. (MHFPC) provides temporary housing and external resources that help refugees seeking political asylum meet their basic needs. MHFPC gives a hand up to Veterans and those Internally displaced from their homes. For more information, visit homesfreedomproject.com or call 561-664-5481.
For more information on Gulfstream Goodwill Industries, visit goggi.org or call 561-848-7200.
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