The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington recently partnered with Comcast NBCUniversal to launch its new technology initiative to help bridge the digital divide in urban areas called “My.Furture.” The Comcast Foundation provided Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington with $100,000 for computers, tablets, Smart Boards, digital cameras, music studio tools and video-editing technology, as well as on-site renovations, including new paint, furniture and structural repairs (thanks to renovation manpower of Clark Construction in DC).
My.Future is a program that allows Club members to select from more than 40 activities that reinforce digital literacy, including areas of exploring the web, communicating with others digitally as well as allowing members to learn robotics, coding and game design.
The grand unveiling of the new computer lab and My.Future in Washington, DC was a rather tame affair with a few executives, a few cameras, DC Council member and one local television personality, but the impact this work will have on the kids will be immeasurable. The renovated Richard England Clubhouse #14 was the Boys & Girls Clubs site chosen to unveil the initiative. My three children were handpicked to be apart of the press conference. My oldest daughter, Michal, was tasked with demonstrating how to use the large touchscreen SMART Board mounted on the wall, transposing her face on the Statue of Liberty before the attendees.
My kids and countless other young people will benefit from the technology upgrades as Clubhouse #14 is one of the busiest Clubs in the area. They are all every excited about having access to so much technology and can’t wait for free time to explore and learn. As a parent, I am excited also. Not only for my kids, but those less fortunate kids who do not have access to the latest computers or in some cases no computers at all at home.
Additional Clubs in Chicago, Philadelphia and San Francisco were also renovated as part of the launch. Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington President and CEO Pandit Wright was joined at the event by Comcast Vice President of Community Investment and Comcast Foundation President Charisse Lillie, Boys & Girls Clubs of America Senior Vice President and Chief Educational Officer Dr. Damon Williams, Councilwoman Yvette Alexander, President and General Manager of NBC4 Washington Jackie Bradford and NBC4 Washington anchor Aaron Gilchrist to celebrate the launch of the program.
From left to right: Jackie Bradford, President and General Manager of NBC4 Washington; Pandit Wright, President and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington; Brad Palazzo, Comcast Director of External Affairs; Yvette Alexander, Washington, D.C., Councilwoman; Fred Maahs, Comcast Director of Community Investment, National Partnerships and Comcast Foundation Vice President; Aaron Gilchrist, NBC4 Washington anchor; Charisse Lillie, Comcast Vice President of Community Investment and Comcast Foundation President; Dr. Damon Williams, Boys & Girls Clubs of America Senior Vice President and Chief Educational Officer; Susan Williamson Ross, Clark Construction Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer