IT Grant Gives Peoples’ Self-Help Housing Residents an Opportunity to Connect

October 30, 2017
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Courtesy photo.

CENTRAL COAST — Streaming videos and sharing photos might be the first things that come to mind when you think about having internet access, but the reality is that the internet impacts just about all facets of our daily lives. Regardless of one’s age, ethnicity, cultural background and economic status, everyone from young students to seniors benefits greatly from the ability to get online.

Thanks to a State program called AB 1299, and the generosity of Peoples’ Self-Help Housing (PSHH) supporters, all PSHH residents living in affordable housing properties will soon have free internet access. The combination of public and private donations will cover the costs of installing broadband infrastructure at over 40 PSHH properties.

“Having internet access at home is crucial for people of all ages and life stages,” said Peoples’ Self-Help Housing President & CEO John Fowler. “Almost everything is done online, and being

able to research information for class assignments, find study materials, apply jobs, or handle personal finances makes life a lot simpler. It’s easy to fall behind when you can’t get the information you need quickly, and we want to make sure all of our residents have that opportunity and are in a position to succeed with the appropriate tools.”

For students, most homework assignments and interaction with classmates and tutors is web based. Having internet access is vital for them to be fully participatory, and college applications and scholarship opportunities can also be more efficiently pursued and monitored online.

For seniors, the internet enables them to be in close contact with family, particularly geographically-distant or younger members who communicate via social media channels. Doctor appointments, prescription refills and insurance claims are also handled much more efficiently online.

For those living with disabilities, cutting-edge online features allow for better communication with and access to the outside world.

For job seekers, the internet can greatly enhance workforce readiness through online trainings and message boards, and job applications are often easiest and sometimes required to be web based.

For adults, access to the web provides the ability to maintain good financial health through online banking, credit score monitoring and bill payment services.

About PSHH: Founded in 1970, PSHH is an award winning non-profit organization that develops affordable housing and community facilities for low-income households and homeownership opportunities for working families and special needs populations, such as seniors, veterans, the disabled, and the formerly homeless. With nearly 1,200 self-help homes completed and nearly 1,800 rental units developed, PSHH is the largest affordable housing developer on the Central Coast, with offices in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara. For more information about Peoples’ Self-Help Housing, visit www.pshhc.org, email communications@pshhc.org or call (805) 781-3088.

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