What are Digital Navigators? They help your unconnected neighbor get online!

Earlier today I posted a video from a conversation with folks in Kanabec County and mentioned that ECMECC’s Marc Johnson spoke about working on Digital Navigators to help in their schools and students should education in the area go hybrid or distance again.

Then like a Baader-Meinhof knock on the door, the NDIA (National Digital Inclusion Alliance) send a link about their latest work on Digital Navigators.

What is a Digital Navigator?

Digital Navigators are individuals who address the whole digital inclusion process — home connectivity, devices, and digital skills — with community members through repeated interactions.

Navigators can be volunteers or cross-trained staff who already work in social service agencies, libraries, health, and more who offer remote and socially distant in-person guidance. Often at trusted community-based organizations, Digital Navigators are familiar with resources that relate to digital equity, and they help residents learn to use critical online services that provide guidance with food support, rent, education, employment, childcare, government benefits and more. They recommend resources and check back with the client.

NDIA is working with some groups to deploy and/or start Digital Navigator groups. And they are sharing the information they create and acquire in the process.

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