Community Support Helps Bridge the Digital Divide

Community Support Helps Bridge the Digital Divide

In 2020 when the world shut down, we knew immediately that our PEP kids were at particular risk. Their needs were profound and yet they had few, if any, resources. We knew we needed to find a way to connect with them to help provide a sense of stability. But in a world turned upside down seemingly overnight, building that connection was a daunting prospect.

“When COVID-19 forced the governor of Ohio to close our schools, PEP had a special responsibility to buffer our kids and our families from the devastating impacts of this pandemic,” explained Ken Outcalt, immediate past board chair of PEP. “And unfortunately, almost overnight we were confronted with the realities of the digital divide, and it made this transition and this situation very, very difficult for us and for our students.”

PEP jumped into action. We raised more than $200,000 from our community, allowing our IT team and administrative staff to secure and distribute the electronic devices our kids needed. The quick pivot and generosity created essential connection for our kids at the time they needed it most.

The theme of this story repeats throughout our PEP history. Generosity of donors like you make these stories of innovation and solution possible. When you give to PEP, you fuel a future of hope for our young people, allowing PEP to build on their strengths and to serve as their refuge in times of need.

Follow our stories of innovation on social media: #PEPat50

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