St. Paul, Minn. | April 29, 2021 10:00 AM Central Daylight Time
As part of its ongoing commitment to help connect low-income families to the Internet so they can fully participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy, Comcast today announced it has equipped 44 additional locations in the Twin Cities with WiFi-connected “Lift Zones” bringing the total to 74.
Working with its network of nonprofit partners, Comcast is providing robust WiFi hotspots in safe spaces designed to help students get online, participate in distance learning and do their homework. This initiative provides free connectivity inside partner community centers for the next three years.
“We are so pleased to be the recipients of Comcast’s Lift Zone Wi-Fi connectivity in our recreation centers and other park facilities,” said Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board Superintendent Al Bangoura. “As we move toward re-opening more recreation centers for safe in-person programming, we are looking forward to providing programs that support youth in doing their schoolwork, facilitate work readiness training, and invite families in to access virtual activities and information.”
“We are proud to partner with community organizations across the Twin Cities and equip them with free internet service that will provide kids with safe, fast and reliable connectivity to keep up with school and prepare for a brighter future,” said J.D. Keller, regional senior vice president, Comcast Twin Cities. “The COVID-19 crisis continues to put many low-income students at risk of being left behind, accelerating the need for comprehensive digital equity and internet adoption programs to support them. We hope these Lift Zones will help those students who, for a variety of reasons, are unable to connect to effective distance learning at home.”
Some of the new Twin Cities community organizations that have established Lift Zones in their respective facilities include 40 Minneapolis Parks & Rec locations and Face to Face in St. Paul. A full list of new Comcast Lift Zones can be found here.
In March, Comcast announced a $1 billion commitment over ten years in continued support of digital equity, including its Lift Zones initiative, which aims to establish WiFi-connected safe spaces in 1,000+ community centers nationwide for students and adults by the end of 2021.
Lift Zones complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, which has helped connect a cumulative total of 10 million low-income people to the Internet at home since 2011, including more than 272,000 Minnesotans.