4 Your Mission is a blog from Mobile Beacon that helps you – a nonprofit – achieve your mission by bringing you up-to-date info and tips that you can really use.
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Tech Term of the Week

Electronic Resources Management (ERM)

Systems developed to assist librarians in the control of licensed third-party resources published electronically (databases, e-books, e-journals, etc.), including license management, renewal, legal use, access management, and collection development.

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The Right Time for a National Digital Inclusion Alliance


Guest article by Angela Siefer
Director at National Digital Inclusion Alliance

I am so happy to announce the creation of the National Digital Inclusion Alliance.

There is a clear need among non-profit organizations, libraries, schools and other community institutions for a national broadband adoption advocacy organization. Three federal agencies (National Telecommunications and Information Administration [NTIA], Housing and Urban Development [HUD], Federal Communications Commission [FCC]), plus the White House, are focusing significant attention and possibly significant resources on broadband adoption. How significant the resources will be could depend upon strong advocacy by broadband adoption practitioners in non-profit organizations and libraries.

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SHLB Wrap-up: Ideas Exchanged, Pilot Libraries Awarded



We’re completely energized from the recent Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition (SHLB) 2015 Annual Conference! SHLB is made up of like-minded nonprofit and commercial organizations that support open, affordable, high-capacity broadband connections for community anchor institutions (CAIs) and their surrounding communities.

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Mobile Beacon helps give immigrant adult learners the tools they need to succeed.



Article by Larry Britt of RIFLI
Computer Science & Social Media Coordinator

The RI Family Literacy Initiative (RIFLI) is a 16-year-old-adult education agency and we primarily serve immigrants – approximately 250 a year.  We offer an educational continuum from beginner English as a Second Language (ESL) classes to Career and College Transitions preparation.  We partner with many libraries, work sites and community agencies where we offer our classes.  Over the past year we’ve advanced technology initiatives that we hope will build a cohesive, integrated solution to address our students’ digital literacy needs.

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Mobile Beacon is helping provide free, at-home Internet access to over 10,000 NYC patrons.

The Library Hotspot lending program was first piloted by New York Public Library (NYPL) over the spring 2014 using 100 Wi-Fi modems with unlimited 4G data plans provided through Mobile Beacon. The catalyst for the pilot began after a survey of patrons revealed that 55 percent of those utilizing free Internet and computers in NYPL’s branches did not have broadband access at home. When household income dropped below $25,000, that percentage increased to 65 percent.

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Closing the Digital Divide in Kansas City

Did you know 70% of children in the Kansas City School District do not have Internet access at home?

That’s one statistic the Kansas City Public Library is working hard to change. They have launched the Digital Inclusion Coalition – regional nonprofit, government and businesses leaders whose goal is to increase Internet connectivity and digital literacy in Kansas City. As the central community organizer, the Kansas City Public Library brought the group together this fall for the first time, hosting their kickoff at the Kansas City Digital Inclusion Summit sponsored by, among others, Google Fiber.

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Happy Connected Educator Month!

This month is Connected Educator Month (CEM) which supports President Obama’s education initiative called ConnectED. It is designed to connect 99 percent of America’s students to the digital age through next-generation broadband and high-speed wireless in their schools and libraries within five years.

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Timeline of Educational Technology is Schools Infographic

Most of us think of technology in the classroom as a relatively recent event. In fact, it’s been an ever-evolving reality for over a century. Take a look at how technology in schools has changed over time.

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Tips to Maximize Your Nonprofit’s Data Plan

Data is the new coin of the realm. Learn how to stretch your budget!

Real time access to information enables nonprofits to more effectively advance their mission in a rapid response world. But anytime/anywhere access comes with a price, which can vary significantly. How do you choose the right data plan among all the options out there? Start with the numbers.

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Mobile Connectivity for Nonprofits – what’s your best option?

Being able to work anytime/anywhere can greatly expand your reach, but it requires mobile Internet access. There are many connectivity tools available to keep you connected to the data and online resources you need outside the office. What’s the best option for you? That depends on what you’re using it for.

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College Unbound Students Attain Success on the Go

College Unbound Header

Problem: College Unbound is a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to providing a pathway to an accredited bachelor’s degree with partnering colleges and universities. The program is targeted to those who began a degree program but were unable to finish, often adults who are full-time workers, full-time students and full-time parents. Though College Unbound is dedicated to educating one student at a time in out-of-the-classroom settings, many of their students did not have the necessary access to computers or Internet to complete their coursework.

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Housing Authority Pilot Provides Computers,
& Internet Access for Low-Income Residents

The Providence Housing Authority (PHA) not only provides safe, affordable housing, its mission includes addressing residents’ economic needs and offering a bridge to a better future. But one-fifth of their residents don’t have Internet access at home – a key tool in finding and applying for jobs, signing up for an affordable healthcare plan, and continuing education.

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4 Mobile Nonprofit Sites to Learn From

Recently we gave you our top tips for going mobile. Today we’re sharing some of our favorite sites that can help bring those tips to life for you. Feel free to click away and see how these work on your smartphone or tablet!

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Seven Tips for Nonprofits Going Mobile

We’ve talked about how important mobile sites are and why responsive design is a great option. To help you get started, we’d like to share some tips on creating a good mobile web site. Ready to take the plunge? Keep these guidelines in mind:

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We LOVE Nonprofits!

One of the things we love most about our jobs is knowing that we’re helping other nonprofit organizations fulfill some truly worthwhile missions. In honor of Valentine’s Day, here are some that are especially close to our hearts.

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