Twenty-two adults in East Portland and Gresham learned new technology skills and earned themselves a free laptop thanks to a library partnership with technology non-profit FreeGeek and the Rockwood community organization, Rosewood Initiative.
The five-week “Welcome to Computers” program took place in November and December at the Rosewood Initiative in East Portland. The program was taught in Spanish by the library’s Bilingual Technology Coordinator Carlos Galeana. He offered lessons on sending email, navigating the internet, downloading apps, and using the library. After completing the full program of weekly, two-hour classes, participants received a free laptop from Free Geek and one year of technical support.
“I love teaching the important technology skills that will help them both in the library and in everyday life,” said Carlos, who has taught the program twice.
For some of the students, the classes are the next step in helping them earn their GED; for others, a boost in navigating complex online job applications.
“The computer is a nice extra,” adds Carlos.
The library and Free Geek teach the Welcome to Computers program with various community partners throughout the year. A new session will begin in February 2019 with Central City Concern.