City and County of San Francisco

San Francisco Community Broadband Opportunities Program (SF-CBOP)

According to a 2009 study conducted by the City and County of San Francisco, only 42 percent of seniors in the city currently subscribe to broadband, and only 61 percent of those who define themselves as African American or Latino do so. Both figures are much lower than the citywide rate of 82 percent. The City’s Departments of Technology; Aging & Adult Services; and Children, Youth & Families, along with several other key partners in the nonprofit, educational, and for-profit sectors, propose to provide broadband-oriented training to seniors, adults in residential treatment, low-income and ESL youth, and other economically and socially vulnerable groups. The project intends to include an online support group for seniors via partner and collaborate with digital media nonprofit groups to provide training in digital media and dissemination of local user-generated digital content in ways that encourage broadband adoption.

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BTOP In Action

By November 2011, the City and County of San Francisco held digital literacy training for more than 1,600 participants. These workshops were created to boost broadband adoption among low-income families, senior citizens, adults with disabilities, and other socially vulnerable groups. Known as the San Francisco Community Broadband Opportunities Program (SF-CBOP), the City is partnering with 18 nonprofit and educational organizations to provide new computer classes and resources for local residents.

For example, The Bayview Hunter’s Point Center for Arts and Technology and Streetside Stories, two non-profit media arts organizations, provide digital media youth programs, which prepare students for careers in website design and content generation. Offered at 13 locations across the city, these programs teach participants website design principles, digital filmmaking, digital storytelling, and content creation techniques. The Community Living Campaign, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of senior citizens, provides digital literacy classes in more than 50 senior centers. These classes include computer basics, Internet fundamentals, Internet safety, and social media techniques.

Additionally, SF-CBOP is using BTOP funds to deploy new workstations in computer centers across the county. As of November 2011, SF-CBOP distributed more than 86 new workstations to the Vietnamese Youth Development Corporation, the Sunset Neighborhood Beacon Center, and the Western Addition Neighborhood Beacon Center. By the end of the BTOP project, SF-CBOP will provide over 300,000 instructor-led training hours in a variety of languages, including English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Russian, to more than 8,000 residents.

Last Updated: December 23, 2011

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