At Human-I-T, we create equitable access to opportunity by providing devices, internet access, digital skills training, and tech support for communities left on the wrong side of the digital divide—while at the same time, empowering businesses and organizations to do good by diverting technology from landfills to protect our planet.
In order to shrink this divide, we make it easy for our partners to do good–join us to create a world where everyone can access opportunities to unlock their full potential.
tech items distributed
households assisted with internet
digital literacy learners
pounds of e-waste diverted
Two Big, Interconnected Problems
Although e-waste only accounts for 2% of the mass in landfills, it produces 70% of the toxic waste there. E-waste’s heavy metals and toxic chemicals pollute the air, water, and soil for miles around its dump sites. condemning millions of people in Africa, southeast Asia, and the Middle East to suffer from health issues. We must shrink the e-waste stream if we want to ensure the health and safety of our planet and its people.
The Digital Divide
Opportunities for education, social connections, and job advancement are increasingly found online–leaving the more than 100 million Americans without access to digital technology and internet to fall further behind. As the need for computers and the internet grows, the access and availability of that technology needs to keep up if we want to ensure everyone has equitable opportunities to unlock their full potential in the digital age.
Our simple process for driving digital equity and shrinking the e-waste stream:
Capture unwanted technology from businesses and other organizations
We collect used technology from corporate partners across the country—empowering them to make a positive environmental and social impact by diverting their devices from landfills or recycling plants and allowing them to be shared with people who need them.
Redirect technology back into our communities
We refurbish and refresh donated devices before redirecting them to our communities through targeted programs and initiatives. We also expand access to devices through our low-cost online store to ensure everyone can pursue digital opportunities.
Leverage digital navigation to maximize access to online opportunities
In order for someone to truly have equitable access to opportunities online, they need to have more than just a device. That’s why our digital navigation team works one-on-one with each recipient to connect them to critical, additional digital resources and support including free digital literacy training in multiple languages; free and low-cost internet connections; and direct, 1:1 tech support.
Empower people to unlock their full potential
By providing a full-range of technology and knowledge, we ensure students can go to school remotely, enable seniors to access healthcare, support individuals entering the workforce —and so much more.
“I have an 8 year old daughter, and I am so excited to use my laptop to write a letter to her each week. I am a paramedic in school to be a RN at Kaiser, and to get my classes done I go to the library every day for a computer. This laptop is a game changer for me in my schooling.”
“My laptop will help me start my new business! My husband is an electrician, we are starting an electrical business for residential homes. I am responsible for the finances and managing the company; the laptop will help so much!”
“I am a mom of 4, and I work for the state in helping with foster care. I work remotely a few days of the week, and my laptop will save me so much time since I won't have to travel to the library anymore.”
“I have a 6 year old daughter and 9 year old daughter, and I am always asking them for help with computer stuff. Now that I have my own laptop, I can do everything I need online and start looking for a job; I want to get a job as a professional cleaner for a hotel or a kitchen to take care of my girls.”
How We Turned One of America’s Least-Connected Cities into a Rising Model of Digital Inclusion
By the start of 2020, roughly 1/3 Detroit residents – nearly 250,000 people – weren’t connected to the internet at home and access opportunities online.
By working with our partners in Detroit, we’ve been able to distribute 17,400 devices to residents across Detroit and connect nearly 2,100 Detroit households to high-speed, low-cost internet service. All of this was done while, at the same time, our partners in the Detroit business community helped us divert nearly 400,000 pounds of electronic waste away from landfills.
Now, as we look towards continuing our work in making Motor City a national leader in digital inclusion, we invite you all to click below to read more about our exciting, upcoming community retail location – Human-I-T on 7 Mile – where Detroiters from all income levels can get the assistance they need accessing and taking advantage of digital technology and the internet.
None of these impacts could be made without these philanthropic partners who generously lend their support to help us achieve our vision of inspiring a world where conscious capitalism drives sustainable and just opportunities for all people, organizations, and our planet to thrive.
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