Fam 1St Family Foundation
Fam 1st Family Foundation partners with Peralta Colleges Foundation & OAKWIFI
Oakland, CA ‒ Jan. 13, 2021 ‒ In partnership with Peralta Colleges Foundation and the City of Oakland’s OAKWiFi program, the Fam 1st Family Foundation announced today a computer giveaway that will provide 400 students with computers and connectivity to ease access challenges during the extended COVID-19 shutdown.
Just in time for the new semester, eligible families and students can apply by January 22, 2021, or until the application is closed. Applicants must live in Oakland, be enrolled in Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) or Peralta Community College District (PCCD) and reside in one of the neighborhood coverage zones included in the OAKWiFi expansion.
“The emphasis is to equip students, many of which live in the most vulnerable neighborhoods in Oakland, with the tools they need to make sure their education is not impeded by the shelter in place mandates to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said LaNiece Jones, Executive Director of the Peralta Colleges Foundation.
Despite OUSD, Oakland Charter Schools and PCCD distributing computers and hotspot devices to students who need them for remote learning, there are still many students left without a computer and access to the internet.
400 Chromebooks will be given away to students in need courtesy of Fam 1st, which was founded in 2011 by Oakland natives and NFL athletes Josh Johnson, Marshawn Lynch and Marcus Peters. Fam 1st Executive Director Brije Gammage works with students at West Oakland Youth Center and has seen the need first hand. “Many students and families are without a computer of their own. Even with the loaner computers and hotspot devices available, many families are still struggling to look for work or even shop for groceries online,” Gammage said. “ We hope that these computers will help families and students of all ages to ease the stress of distance learning and the financial cost of purchasing a computer and internet services.”
City of Oakland’s Chief Information Officer Andrew Peterson is leading the OAKWiFi project, which is significantly expanding public WIFI coverage to parts of West Oakland, Downtown Oakland, and East Oakland along the International Blvd/ East 14th corridor to the San Leandro border.
“This partnership is an example of how our community continues to come together to meet the needs of the students and families in our city,” said Peterson. “The COVID-19 pandemic continues to marginalize many disadvantaged, underserved residents in our community. The OAKWiFi initiative provides free internet access for students, seniors, job seekers, small businesses, the underserved and the unconnected.”
Through the deployment of widespread free public WiFi to the most vulnerable and historically underserved communities of Oakland, OAKWIFI seeks to connect residents not only for distance learning but to the broader global community.
“We know that the digital divide will not be bridged by OAKWiFi alone, but we are committed to establishing new creative partnerships and finding innovative ways to provide connectivity and resources for students and families as well as seniors, small businesses, and job seekers.”
For more information on the City of Oakland’s OAKWiFi program and coverage, visit www.oaklandca.gov/OAKWIFI.