Lift Zones provide safe spaces where students and adults can access the Internet
August 31, 2021 – Comcast today announced the launch of a new WiFi-connected “Lift Zone” at the G.W. Buck Boys & Girls Club of Joliet (GWBBGC) located at 226 E. Clinton St. Lift Zones are safe spaces where children can get online to do schoolwork and adults can get online to learn new digital skills, search for employment and access an array of services.
The COVID-19 crisis put many low-income students and families at risk of being left behind and accelerated the need for comprehensive digital equity and Internet adoption programs to support them. The Lift Zones are part of a larger multiyear plan by Comcast to support community-organization-based WiFi at more than 1,000 Lift Zones throughout the country – including in the Chicago area. The Lift Zones also are an extension of the company’s longstanding commitment to help connect low-income families to the Internet and provide resources to help them take advantage of educational opportunities and the digital economy. The Lift Zones complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, a low-cost Internet adoption program for low-income families, which has helped connect more than 10 million people in America – including more than 1 million in Illinois alone – to the Internet at home since it was launched in 2011.
“GWBBGC has helped thousands of children in our community develop the skills they need to thrive in school and ultimately participate in the workforce,” said Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk. “The club is an extremely important provider of services to Joliet’s children. I’m pleased that Comcast is making this commitment to the club and to the futures of children in our community.”
“Internet connectivity and digital skills are crucial to our club members’ success in school and to their futures,” said Kahlil Diab, GWBBGC Executive Director. “The Lift Zone also will help us extend our programs and services to even more members.”
“Through Internet Essentials, Comcast has helped hundreds of thousands of Illinoisans cross the digital divide,” said Matthew Summy, Comcast’s Regional Vice President of External and Government Affairs. “I’m proud that Comcast recognized the impact of the digital divide early on, stepped up and now continues to offer solutions that further our commitment to communities through the creation of Lift Zones.”
Comcast continues to offer, through the end of 2021, all new Internet Essentials customers two months of free Internet service. Comcast also continues to extend free access to its 1.5 million public Xfinity WiFi hotspots to anyone who needs them, including non-customers, through the end of 2021. These hotspots are located in public places, ranging from small businesses and parks to transportation hubs, and are in addition to the Lift Zones.
Lastly, Comcast’s Internet Essentials program also makes a range of educational resources available online for anyone to access at www.internetessentials.com/learning. The Learning Portal provides videos and materials about topics, including: Internet Basics, Online Safety and Security, Building New Skills and Getting Things Done. The site also links to a number of free educational websites for students.
About the G.W. Buck Boys & Girls Club of Joliet
GWBBGC’s mission is to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. The club provides its members:
- A safe place to learn and grow;
- Ongoing relationships with caring, adult professionals;
- Life-enhancing programs and character development experiences; and
- Hope and opportunity for all.
About Comcast Corporation
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is a global media and technology company that connects people to moments that matter. We are principally focused on broadband, aggregation, and streaming with over 56 million customer relationships across the United States and Europe. We deliver broadband, wireless, and video through our Xfinity, Comcast Business, and Sky brands; create, distribute, and stream leading entertainment, sports, and news through Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, Universal Studio Group, Sky Studios, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, multiple cable networks, Peacock, NBCUniversal News Group, NBC Sports, Sky News, and Sky Sports; and provide memorable experiences at Universal Parks and Resorts in the United States and Asia. Visit www.comcastcorporation.com for more information.
With nearly 6,000 local employees, Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region
(https://chicago.comcast.com) serves customers in central and northern Illinois, including the Chicago area, northwest Indiana and southwest Michigan. “Like” Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region on Facebook by visiting @Comcast. “Follow” Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region on Twitter at @ComcastIllinois.