New Tech Connection Program at Library
The Henry Carter Hull Library, in conjunction with the Clinton Human Services Department, has developed a new tech connection program to educate those struggling with technological literacy.
Throughout the pandemic, proficiency in using technology has become a must for just about everyone. From Zoom meetings for work to online doctor appointments and everything in between, access to technology has become incredibly important. However, that also means that people struggling with technological issues are at a disadvantage.
To combat that, the Henry Carter Hull Library partnered with the town’s human services department to launch the tech connection program.
A press release about the event states the program’s goal is to “…increase digital literacy and access in our community.”
Per the release, “Tech connection offers a variety of services ranging from introductory technology and internet education, basic troubleshooting with devices and software, drop-in hours for one-on-one support, and lendable devices such as Chromebook laptops, WiFi internet hotspots, and Grandpads, which are designed for homebound senior residents without regular access to computers or smartphones.”
As part of that program, Matthew Capece has been hired to work as a tech guide/digital navigator to assist anyone with computer issues.
Currently, Capece can be found on the second floor of the library on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Additionally, starting in May, Capece will begin hosting a series of workshops to address common questions people have had.
Specific questions for Capece can be sent to email@example.com, or by calling the library at 860-669-2342. More information is also available at www.hchlibrary.org/techconnection.
Guests can also leave information in the Tech Connection binder at the library, and Capece will follow up later. Help is available in both English and Spanish.
Sarah Borgnis-Tobin, the adult programming coordinator for the library, said that the impetus for the tech connection program was a combination of different factors.
The human services department got money from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) “for aiding seniors specifically, and one of the needs was in tech,” Borgnis- Tobin explained.
Since many seniors were already coming to the library for its services, it was determined that rather than coming up with a new meeting place, using the library to host the program made the most sense.
Through the ARPA funding, Borgnis-Tobin said that the library was able to purchase and is able to loan out laptops for free.
“They can burrow the [laptop] as well a hot spot, and then they can [have] internet access. This can be useful for homebound seniors who have telehealth appointments, for example,” Borgnis-Tobin said.
Borgnis-Tobin said that a survey is available on the tech connection website as well as in hard copies at the library. The survey will help inform what kinds of technology workshops people are interested in in the future.
“It’s been really exciting watching this program grow,” said Borgnis-Tobin.