‘Connected Tennessee’ presents C.E. McGruder Center with new printers

(l-r): Wil Stewart, C.E. McGruder lead site coordinator, and Connected Tennessee Executive Director Corey Johns

In need of updated equipment for its computer lab, C.E. McGruder Family Resource Center Lead Site Coordinator Wil Stewart called Connected Tennessee hoping that the organization would be able to help. As a result, the community center has added two new Lexmark printers.

On March 25, Connected Tennessee presented two new printers to the center that is a collaborative effort of Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center, United Way of Metropolitan Nashville, and the Metro Nashville Public Schools providing programs and services to support and strengthen families who live in the 37208 ZIP code area.

The printers are part of a donation made by Lexmark International to Connected Tennessee’s Computers 4 Kids (C4K) program. Kentucky-based Lexmark provided a total of 250 printers to the C4K program that have been distributed across the state in the last year.

As part of the Computers 4 Kids: Preparing Tennessee’s Next Generation for Success project, the C4K program deploys computers, academic support programs, and workforce training to two disparate, but especially at-risk, populations: those in the state’s foster care system who are ‘aging out’ as they turn 18, and youth who are active in the state’s 76 Boys & Girls Clubs. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act-funded program will impact the lives of nearly 60,000 youth across the state throughout the life of the grant providing a helping hand to youth who are working hard to attain a better life for themselves. Occasionally, the C4K program will also donate printers to local and state organizations, such as the C.E. McGruder Family Resource Center, that focuses on educating and empowering youth, individuals, and families in the state.

“I would like to thank Connected Tennessee on behalf of the McGruder Center and each of the residents who will benefit from this donation,” said Stewart. “We look forward to future collaborations that will increase the digital literacy of the North Nashville community.”

In just under five years, the Computers 4 Kids program has:

Awarded more than 4,300 computers to youth in need across the state

Supported all 76 of the state’s Boys & Girls Clubs

Provided computers to more than 3,250 foster youth aging out of the Department of Children’s Services program

Allowed the Boys & Girls Clubs in Tennessee youth to complete more than 90,000 hours of computer training

Impacted all 95 counties in Tennessee

The ‘Preparing Tennessee’s Next Generation for Success’ project is a result of a $2.3 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grant awarded to the C4K program in August 2010 by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP). BTOP provides grants to support the deployment of broadband infrastructure, enhance and expand public computer centers, and encourage sustainable adoption of broadband service.

For more information, visit www.connectedtn.org