COVID-19 Relief Fund boosts access to technology

Young man in wheelchair using computer

Champaign County COVID-19 Relief Fund grants $22,750 to improve access to technology

Local organizations are swiftly pivoting their programming to virtual formats and serving our community in new ways. The Champaign County COVID-19 Relief Fund awarded four grants to increase access to technology.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the pivotal role technology plays in the community’s daily life. 

“It is no longer a luxury to have access to a computer or tablet – it is an economic and health necessity. But for too many, essential technology has been out of reach. Through these grants we aim to reduce the disparity in access to technology,” remarked Sue Grey, President & CEO, United Way of Champaign County.

Wave 4 Grants

  • $5,000 – Developmental Services Center – Tablets for people with disabilities living in group homes, so they can stay connected with their families and access telehealth services
  • $2,500 – DREAAM - Laptops and printers, so staff can conduct education programming virtually
  • $5,250 – Rosecrance – Telehealth communication devices, so patients in mental health, substance abuse, and treatment programs can continue receiving services
  • $10,000 – Housing Authority of Champaign County – Computers for YouthBuild program participants, so they can complete their high school diploma and participate in career training

Danielle Matthews, Chief Executive Officer of Developmental Services Center, remarked, “During COVID-19, DSC has been especially concerned about people not having access to others for social/emotional support, and not having the ability to reach out when they are in need of something, including basic needs, medical attention, or simply touching base with someone on a regular basis. The tablets are more than just a bridge to maintain contact with someone, but genuinely a way to provide services and supports virtually, which include community connections, personal development, and telehealth options.”

“By increasing access to technology, we are helping our neighbors stay connected, stay healthy, and advance their education and careers. The grants are made possible by the generous support of so many donors to the COVID-19 Relief Fund. We would like to express our deep gratitude to all who have contributed,” remarked Joan Dixon, CEO of the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois.

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Young man in wheelchair using computer