Quad County Urban League Receives $15,000 Grant from Comcast to Advance Digital Equity Through Skills Training

Training at organization’s “Lift Zone” will help adults build the skills they need to succeed in the workforce of today and tomorrow

July 6, 2023 — Comcast announced today that it has awarded the Quad County Urban League (QCUL) a $15,000 grant to support digital skills and workforce development training at the organization’s Lift Zone, which Comcast opened onsite in July 2021. Lift Zones are WiFi-connected spaces where students can get online to do schoolwork and adults can get online to build digital skills, search for jobs and access an array of social services.

A recent National Skills Coalition (NSC) report found that 90 percent of jobs in Illinois require digital skills; yet, one-third of U.S. workers don’t have the foundational digital skills they need to enter and thrive in today’s workforce. Together, these findings point to a significant digital skills gap. The report also found that closing the digital skills divide can increase workers’ income and reduce costs for employers associated with workforce turnover.

“This grant will help the people and the communities we serve in and around Aurora develop the skills that they need to excel in our increasingly digital economy,” said QCUL President and CEO Theodia Gillespie. “We appreciate Comcast’s continued partnership and its long-standing work to advance digital equity.”

The QCUL Lift Zone is one of more than 1,250 Lift Zones throughout the country, with more than 90 in this region alone. The Lift Zones complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, a low-cost Internet adoption program for low-income families, which has helped more than 10 million people in America – over 1.6 million in Illinois – connect to the Internet at home since it launched in 2011.

“Working with hundreds of partners, including the QCUL, we’ve had considerable success in bridging the digital divide in Illinois over the last decade,” said Carl Jones, Jr., Comcast’s Regional Vice President of Government and External Affairs. “This investment will create opportunities for even more people in Aurora and its surrounding communities to participate in today’s digital world by helping them overcome one of the greatest obstacles to digital equity – the ‘digital skills gap.’”

The grant marks the continuation of Comcast’s more than 10-year partnership with the QCUL. The support for QCUL is part of Project UP, Comcast’s $1 billion commitment to advance digital equity and help create a future of unlimited possibilities.

About Quad County Urban League

The Quad County Urban League (QCUL) supports racial justice, civil rights and economic empowerment for African Americans and others within the Quad Counties (DuPage, Kane, Kendall and Will) of Illinois. As an advocate for educational excellence and economic self-reliance; we develop programs and services to empower children, youth and adults.

Sharing the commitment of the 110-year-old community-based Urban League movement,

QCUL joins 98 other dedicated affiliates in their charge to create sustainable economic and civil community models with global impact. For more information, visit www.qcul.org.

About Comcast Corporation

Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is a global media and technology company. From the connectivity and platforms we provide, to the content and experiences we create, our businesses reach hundreds of millions of customers, viewers, and guests worldwide. We deliver world-class broadband, wireless, and video through Xfinity, Comcast Business, and Sky; produce, distribute, and stream leading entertainment, sports, and news through brands including NBC, Telemundo, Universal, Peacock, and Sky; and bring incredible theme parks and attractions to life through Universal Destinations & Experiences. Visit www.comcastcorporation.com for more information.

About Comcast Greater Chicago Region

With around 5,000 local employees, Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region (https://chicago.comcast.com) serves customers in central and northern Illinois, including the Chicago area, northern 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.



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