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[liberationtech] Boston area event: what nonprofit organizations need to know about community technology centers

Deborah Elizabeth Finn deborah_elizabeth_finn at
Mon Oct 6 10:09:09 PDT 2014

Dear Liberation Tech Colleagues,

(Putting on my Tech Networks of Boston hat)

Tech Networks of Boston (also known as "TNB") hosts Roundtable sessions
every other Friday afternoon; these are informal discussions and
presentations, on a wide range of topics of interest to TNB's staff,
nonprofit clients, and friends.

We hope that you will join us on November 7th, when our featured guest will
be Peter Miller.  The topic will be "What nonprofit organizations need to
know about community technology centers." Third Sector New England has
graciously offered to act as co-host for this session, and we will
therefore be meeting in the videoconference room of their NonProfit Center.

Here's what Peter says about the session:

"Community technology centers (CTCs) are ordinarily approached primarily as
the institution par excellence for addressing the problems of the digital
divide and promoting digital inclusion, with a host of secondary benefits
of interest to the organizations sponsoring them. This presentation on CTCs
will focus primarily on what have previously been considered secondary
benefits and should be of interest to any nonprofit with constituents
coming through the door as well as any staff or consultants involved in
organizational or technology planning.

"Among these benefits are:

"1. Any member or client service can be very usefully enhanced by looking
at the technology tools and resources available in addressing it and the
advantages of having a CTC or in-house computer lab for constituent
training, education, and access. Any kind of literacy, health, education,
job training, recreational, civic, early childhood to disabled and seniors
and aging program that brings people in the door can make a vital
contribution if those people leave with enhanced, focused, self-directed
technology tools, resources,, and services.

"2. A CTC/computer lab facility can also provide a full range of additional
services on its own terms: some examples are emerging technology tools,
applications, and programs, social media, where to get donated equipment,
apps, and connectivity, community-based desktop publishing, data
management, and consulting.

"3. A major benefit of having a CTC is the expanded opportunity and
foundation it provides for collaborations and partnerships, for pulling
together and networking services and resources in a particular program area
to undertaking general community development on a fuller and more
integrated scale.

"4. All these considerations together should lead any serious,
constituent-serving NPO to conclude: 'I need to give a serious look at CTC
development - both internally and externally. If we choose not to
build/have a CTC as a part of our planning, at the very least we need to
know about and have a mutually-supportive relationship with all the special
institutional CTCs in our program area(s) and community - at libraries,
churches, neighborhood centers, Y's, and Boys and Girls Clubs, shelters,
Senior Centers, ethnic and national orgs, and schools.' "
Please note that session will NOT be a sales pitch for any product or
service. The TC Roundtable series is an educational opportunity for
nonprofit professionals to learn along with their peers from other

To register, please follow this link:

We hope that you can join us for a lively conversation! Please respond to
this invitation, to let us know whether you'll be attending. We are running
a very popular series and have to track the head count carefully, so a
definite YES or NO is real help to us.

Best regards from Deborah

 Deborah Elizabeth Finn |  Senior Strategist
 Tech Networks of Boston
 1 Wadleigh Place  |South Boston, MA  02127
 Phone: 617.504.8188  | Fax: 888.527.9333
deborah at | <>
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