BTOP Projects at Work: Making the Most of Government Partnerships

Providing services in underserved and remote areas can be difficult without support systems. In such communities, leveraged resources and partnerships can range from helpful to downright critical. Maine’s state library and a non-profit organization in Washington are using NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding and partnerships with government agencies to attain their goals despite challenging circumstances.

Using Video Conferencing to Connect

We've talked to a handful of libraries that plan to add video conferencing to their available resources using BTOP funding. While many have shared their intent to purchase software and hardware, few were able to articulate precisely how they might use it. This wasn't the case for Janet McKenney of the Maine State Library. She sat down with us recently to share how libraries in Maine plan to use this technology:

BTOP Projects at Work: Increased Access in the Community and at Home

Acquiring and sustaining high-speed Internet access can be difficult and cost prohibitive in remote and low-income areas. In such communities, innovation and additional funding are often essential. Two non-profit agencies are using the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) to fund innovative ways to assist communities in Ohio, New York, and California.

BTOP Projects at Work: Successful Partnerships

Finding the right community development partners can be difficult for non-profit organizations. Sometimes, because resources are scarce, non-profit leaders compete with one another when they should collaborate.  Fortunately, as we launched the Spanish language components of our Small Business Success Series, I could turn to people with whom I had worked successfully over the past decade: Sara Nelson, Founder of La Comunidad Habla, and Andrea Plaza, Founder of Encuentro.  Both these women are bold, visionary, and willing to partner to get their programs built and accomplish their goals.

BTOP Projects at Work: Fast Forward New Mexico’s Small Business Success Training

America didn’t invent entrepreneurship - but we sure do love it here.  Even President Obama is getting on the entrepreneurship bandwagon, announcing new programs to spur technology innovation that will lead to new companies being formed and hopefully, more jobs. 

BTOP Projects at Work: Assessing the Effectiveness of Programs

Grant funding can provide essential supports to libraries and non-profits in the face of frozen or shrinking budgets. But without proper metrics, it can be difficult to determine the usefulness and efficacy of funded resources. A non-profit agency in Washington and a library in Maine are two examples of organizations that have developed ways to assess the materials and programming provided by NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding.

BTOP Projects at Work: Developing an Engaging Curriculum

An engaging, tailored curriculum can make all the difference when providing training to people who have had minimal experience with technology. In these communities, the proper training can be a catalyst for change. Two non-profit agencies are using NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding to train communities in Washington and Ohio on computer skills and broadband access.

BTOP Projects at Work: Informing Innovative Training Methods

In remote and underserved communities, training on computers and related technology is often critical to ensure that residents are equipped with up-to-date skills. A non-profit organization in New Mexico and Maine’s state library are using the funds from the NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant to fund innovative ways to provide necessary training in such communities.