2020 hasn’t been all bad. As Jackie from Banner Neighborhoods testifies, Code in the Schools made a lot of good news happen this year. Banner Neighborhoods runs great community programs for East Baltimore residents. Through our computer refurbishment work, thanks to your support, we were able to give their young people laptops to keep this summer. What did they do with them? Remote work that they got paid to do thanks to the city's YouthWorks Summer Jobs program. In her words “we still a community that shines,” even through tough times, because of you.
At Code in the Schools we are as committed as ever to our mission. What we do—empower young people in Baltimore to learn and use technology to shape the world around them—and why we do it—to advance in education and the tech industry the representation of black people, other racial and ethnic minorities, women, and LGBTQAI+ folks —has never been more important. Please help us make more good news in 2021.
Like everywhere, the COVID epidemic left no aspect of our organization unchallenged. With the March shutdown, our instructors were unable to continue teaching at our Baltimore City partner schools or at our office, the site of our after-school programs. After reassuring our staff that we’d get through the crisis together, we regrouped, virtualized our K-12 programs and made them available online for free. We helped partner organizations struggling to get their programs online, conducted virtual Professional Development workshops for Computer Science educators and ran remote summer programs for students.
These efforts are meaningless, however, for the many families in Baltimore without computers and internet access. The long-existing digital divide in Baltimore City came into stark view with schools and libraries closing . So we began collecting donations, refurbishing and giving away computers to students in need, established a free tech support hotline, and in the summer we received grant funding to buy refurbished equipment to continue to give away.
Between now and the end of the year, we’ll share a lot more good news stories resulting from the work we’ve done this year. And we'll do a lot more of in 2021 thanks to your support. Please donate now to keep the good news coming in 2021.