Girls Inc. of the Valley received a $2,000 grant from the Rotary Club of Springfield to support Girls Inc. of the Valley’s “Bridge the Digital Divide” project. This donation will help girls and their families overcome social and economic stressors during this pandemic.
In the midst of the upheaval caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for positive, girl-focused, youth-development programming is stronger than ever. Girls who were already dealing with adverse childhood experiences like poverty and racism need additional support during these challenging times, and this donation from the Rotary Club of Springfield will allow both organizations to help serve the community.
Many of the girls have been asking if Girls Inc.’s Eureka! STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education program will happen during the summer of 2021. To ensure the safety of their participants, staff, and volunteers, Girls Inc. will provide Eureka! University, a virtual version of the program, this summer.
Girls Inc. of the Valley aims to inspire all girls to see themselves as leaders with the skills and capabilities to improve and influence their local communities, and its leaders are concerned that COVID-19 will widen the existing digital divide between those with ready access to computers and the internet and those without these resources. Currently, five Springfield Eureka! participants do not have the technology to access virtual programming. Girls Inc. of the Valley’s “Bridge the Digital Divide” project will provide each girl with a Chromebook and wi-fi capability to ensure her ability to participate in Eureka! University this summer, and continue Eureka! programming during the school year.
“We are so grateful to the Springfield Rotary Club for this grant to fund our ‘Bridging the Digital Divide’ project,” said Suzanne Parker, executive director of Girls Inc. of the Valley. “It is critical for girls to have the technology they need to succeed in order to grow up healthy, educated, and independent. This generous grant will provide access to technology that is crucial for girls in the Valley.”