Strategic Plan 2020
Tech Goes Home empowers communities to access and use digital tools to overcome barriers and advance lives.
Digital exclusion perpetuates poverty. Without the tools, access, and skills to do homework, navigate online job portals, manage finances, communicate with loved ones, and so much more, it has become incredibly difficult to succeed. And considering the stark demographic inequities in the use of technology, digital inclusion has become a social justice issue of our time.
80% of Fortune 500 companies require online job applications, including major employers such as Walmart and CVS (FCC)
84% of the nation’s K-12 teachers report that digital inequities are growing in their classrooms (Pew Research Center, 2017)
44% of adults with household incomes below $30,000 a year don’t have home broadband services and 46% don’t have a computer (Pew Research Center, 2019)
Only 46% of seniors with household incomes below $30,000 say they go online (Pew Research Center 2017)
Supporting people to get online and use digital health resources can be crucial to achieving local priorities including: physical and mental wellbeing, prevention, self care, shared care and shared decision making, long term condition management, appropriate use of urgent and emergency care (NHS 2019)
TGH addresses these inequities by providing free digital skills training, discounted new computers, and help securing home Internet access. We serve people from the ages of 3 to 93, prioritizing those without technology, the un/underemployed, immigrants, and people with disabilities.
TGH is focused on tackling the entrenched barriers to technology adoption and Internet access. Our school, community, small business, and early childhood initiatives provide an impactful and cost-effective model to help families and participants gain the skills, hardware, and Internet access needed for lifelong success.
Founded in 2000, Tech Goes Home (TGH) is an award-winning 501(c)(3) nonprofit that empowers communities to access and use digital tools to overcome barriers and advance lives. Simply put, TGH helps bring computers, Internet, and training to those without so students can do homework, adults can find jobs and manage finances, and seniors can connect with loved ones. With the help of 350+ partner schools and community sites, TGH has served 35,000+ people in over 2,400 courses and distributed 22,500+ new computers over its tenure. In the past four years, TGH has experienced massive growth, from serving 3,000 people in 2016 to 5,500 in 2019. In 2019 alone, TGH ran 396 courses at nearly 200 community partner sites throughout Greater Boston. 75% of TGH learners had household incomes under $35,000 per year. Nearly half of adult learners were immigrants and 85% were people of color.
The TGH model tackles digital exclusion by providing 15 hours of skills training, a new computer to course graduates for $50, and help finding and securing low-cost, high-quality Internet. Each course is uniquely offered by community leaders, trained by TGH, who come from the communities they serve--as early education or school teachers, community case workers or workforce development coaches, and many other grassroots roles. TGH serves people of all ages: TGH School serves school-age students and their caregivers, TGH Early Childhood serves children 3-6 and their caregivers, TGH Community serves adults and seniors, and TGH Small Business serves micro-entrepreneurs.
Board and Staff
The TGH Board consists of 13 supporters (38% women, 31% POC) who bring a balanced perspective to leadership decisions. TGH has 7 full-time staff members (72% women, 43% POC) including co-CEOs, three program staff, one operations/finance staff member, and one fundraising staff member. Read our staff bios here.
Why don’t you use phones instead of computers?
While smartphones are often cited as a ubiquitous tool that could be the solution, a research paper or job application written on a smartphone pales in comparison to one written on a computer. Poor quality access engenders a lower quality product, leading to an ever-widening opportunity gap.
Why don’t you use refurbished computers?
Providing each learner with the same model of computers makes distribution efficient & affordable and allows us to teach the operating system of our choice across all of our programs. We also respect our learners and want to ensure they graduate with a quality laptop.
Why don’t TGH staff conduct the 15 hours?
The train-the-trainer model allows us to enlist more than 300 culturally and racially diverse trainers who currently and directly work with the people we serve. This diverse, equitable, and inclusive approach allows us to scale our impact many fold.
Why not do an online course?
Many of our learners don’t know how to get online, never mind take an online course. That itself is a digital literacy lesson on its own. A small classroom setting allows learners to gain hands-on experience, form peer-to-peer learning relationships, and build a connection with their local schools or community organizations.
Doesn’t all your funding come from the City of Boston?
We get foundational support from CoB but the demand is far greater than the funding can cover. We continue to grow and diversify funding in order to increase reach and sustainability.
Why do you charge $50 for devices?
We view the $50 as an investment from our learners. They are investing in their own learning and success in the program. We’ve found that the copay for devices has helped tremendously with our program completion (90% of learners who enroll graduate from TGH).
Are you only in Boston schools?
No. In addition to schools in Boston, we’re currently serving schools in Cambridge, Chelsea, and Revere. And of course we partner with more than 100 community groups, social service agencies, libraries, municipal agencies, and others.
Are you funded by or a part of Boston Public Schools?
No on both counts. Although we serve many Boston Public Schools, we are not a part of BPS nor do we receive any funding from Boston Public Schools.
Is there a basic TGH curriculum I can look at?
Yes. Check out our TGH School and Community curriculum here.
How are the four programs the same/different?
Check out our program overview here.