Lift Zones Will Provide Safe Spaces with Free Internet to Help Hundreds of Low-Income Students Participate in Distance Learning
LANCASTER, PA – June 15, 2021 – 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 plans to equip Tec Centro, the Lancaster Recreation Center, the Boys & Girls Club’s Sherman & Kathryn Hill Clubhouse and Jack Walker Clubhouse, the YWCA of Lancaster, and the Emerald Foundation Community Campus with WiFi-connected “Lift Zones” this month. The robust WiFi coverage Comcast will provide at these centers is expected to help hundreds of low-income students get online, participate in distance learning and do their homework.
Lift Zone sites complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, which, since 2011, has now connected more than 10 million people in America to broadband Internet at home, including approximately 44,000 people in Lancaster County.
Today’s announcement also comes on the heels of Comcast’s recent $1 billion commitment over the next 10 years to help further close the digital divide and give even more low-income students and families the tools and resources they need to succeed in a digital world.
“We are excited that Comcast will be providing robust WiFi at several locations in the City of Lancaster to support residents and students alike in getting online,” said Mayor Danene Sorace. “We know that access to reliable Internet is critical and the Lift Zones will link access with so many other resources – job training, homework support, and more.”
“As we begin to normalize out of the pandemic, there is a recognition that the educational development of our students has diminished, especially with students from low income communities lacking the advantages of technology,” said Carlos Graupera, CEO of the Spanish American Civic Association. “We are so grateful that Comcast Lift Zone has become available to us. The Comcast Lift Zone will be located in our organization’s workforce development center and will be used extensively to aid our students with after school programs and college preparation studies.”
There are 45 Lift Zones already operational in Comcast’s Keystone Region, with others currently under consideration. These Lift Zones will feature free WiFi provided by Comcast, which will enable students to successfully participate in distance learning. The initiative will provide free connectivity for the community centers for the next three years.
“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,” said Lisa Birmingham, Vice President of External and Government Affairs for Comcast’s Keystone Region. “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.”