Eugene Public Library raises funds for WiFi hotspot program

Once the program kicks off, there will be no charge to rent the devices. The only requirement is a Eugene Public Library card.

Posted: Mar 28, 2021 12:53 PM
Updated: Mar 28, 2021 5:45 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Friends of Eugene Public Library has partnered with the Eugene Public Library Foundation to raise funds to provide WiFi hotspots for those impacted by lack of internet access. 

The initiative, dubbed "Connect Community" does not have an official kickoff at this time, but the organizations are looking to raise $60,000 for 300 Wifi hotspot devices that can be checked out in the same fashion as books.

At this time, they have 11 devices they are using to test the check-out process.

The remainder of the money would go to the purchase of the additional devices, as well as fund the infrastructure and partnerships around the program.

Once the program kicks off, there will be no charge to rent the devices. The only requirement is a Eugene Public Library card. 

Reed Davaz McGowan is the executive director for the Eugene Public Library Foundation. He said this was already a vital need that worsened during the pandemic.

"[The pandemic caused us to] get on online to do everything that you would normally do. Basically going about your daily life with work and school,"McGowan said. "That was where the library felt there was a gap."

Community members appear to be all-in on the new project.

Eugene resident Jennifer Clark said she would use the service when it becomes available.

"This would be a good program for everybody," Clark said.

You can learn more about the initiative by visiting eplfoundation.org/wifi

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