Portland Community Media has been awarded a matching grant of $306,000 from the Mount Hood Cable Regulatory Commission to partner with six community-based nonprofits to extend multimedia and digital technology opportunities to underserved and diverse communities in every part of the city.
Organizers say SmartAccess, (Shared Mobile Applications Responsive Technology) uses three core principles—flexibility, adaptability and responsiveness—designed to extend PCM's capacity, geographic reach and impact.
"We are honored to have MHCRC support our new SmartAccess program," said Sylvia McDaniel, PCM's chief executive officer. "Because of this generous grant, we are able to leverage our services and increase capacity—smartly—during these tough economic times."
Potential partners will house SmartAccess satellite sites; PCM plans to open two SmartAccess centers over the next year, with two more to follow in late 2010 and an additional two in 2011.
The location of the partner sites is still under discussion, but the goal is to reach diverse communities throughout the city, especially disadvantaged groups, who lack access to multimedia technologies.
Since 2000, a widening digital divide has left many people of color, seniors, immigrants, refugees, disabled and low-income individuals without access to everyday technologies that many of us take for granted.
Daniels says the goal of SmartAccess will be to help reduce disparities in access to technology and remove potential barriers to community media services. SmartAccess will also allow PCM to gather useful customer feedback about desired technology needs for each Portland Community.
SmartAccess partners will offer programs similar to that of PCM; however, programs will be customized to meet the needs of each center's unique community. Programs could include multimedia production, computer basics, new media training, and producer certification to develop programs for PCM's access channels CAN 11, ITN 22 and ITN 23. CAN stands for Community Access Network and ITN for Independent Television Network.
About Portland Community Media:
Portland Community Media is located at 2766 N.E. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
For more information go to www.pcmtv.org.