What is this program?
The Digital Navigators of the Hudson Valley program will train up to 100 participants from libraries and community-based organizations to become trusted guides who assist community members in accessing and using technology. The training will provide the resources necessary for participants to perform new services that include: assistance with affordable internet access, device acquisition, technical skills, and application support.
What is the purpose of this program?
This program will prepare library workers and staff at community-based organizations with new skills and resources to perform the duties of a Digital Navigator. Digital Navigators will be equipped to assist under-resourced individuals in their communities to access and use Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). The Digital Navigator program will include:
- Access to digital literacy resources
- Quality technical support
- Applications and online content designed to enable and encourage self-sufficiency, participation and collaboration
The program will provide training and resources that will enable Digital Navigators to:
- provide basic procedural training and support to clients.
- help clients fill out paperwork, submit required identification documentation (if they don’t have access to a computer/scanner/printer), and provide support in acquiring the necessary documentation.
- set up and operate a computer.
- facilitate, set up, and use an affordable Internet connection.
- learn “how to” basics for priority applications.
- Utilize the program’s protocols to assess individual needs, work with clients to set goals, track progress, keep records, and evaluate and report outcomes.
- Effectively use all available outside resources, manage referrals, and contribute to the functional knowledge base of the Digital Navigators program.
What is the timeline?
This Digital Navigator program will run from January 2022-June 2022
January 3, 2022 Applications open
January 7, 2022 @ 10am Information session with system staff
January 21, 2022 January 25 at 12pm Applications close (we extended the deadline!)
January 24, 2022 (week of) Applicants who are chosen will be notified and will be sent a contract to be signed by the director of the organization
February 2, 2022 Contracts are due back
Participants will be required to attend four (4) training sessions with Paolo Balboa and Lo Smith of National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA) on the following days:
- Tuesday, February 8: 11am-12:30pm
- Wednesday, February 9: 11am-12:30pm
- Thursday, February 10: 11am-12:30pm
- Friday, February 11: 11am-12:30pm
The training will cover, with scheduled break-out sessions to encourage discussion and interactivity, the following topics:
- Introduction to digital inclusion and equity
- Understanding learner needs
- Data collection and analysis
- Overview of local resource guide, audience, and community
- Skill share and sharing resources including tools and resources
- Privacy and Internet safety
Please note: All sessions will be held virtually. Participants must commit to attending all four sessions.
Participants in the Digital Navigator program will be assessed on their understanding of the program following the training.
February 12-March 27, 2022, participants will have time to develop their program with the support of NDIA, Mid-Hudson Library System, Ramapo Catskill Library System, and Southeastern NY Library Resources Council. Participating organizations will also receive professionally-made marketing materials to promote the program in their community. We will host regular weekly phone calls to check in with participants and system staff on Thursdays at 12pm, and you can reach out to your system staff as necessary.
March 28-June 15, 2022 is the window for program implementation. During this time, Digital Navigators will be expected to meet with at least five (5) clients from the community. Participants will be asked to complete intake and assessment forms and keep checklists when meeting with clients. You will be expected to meet with each client at least twice.
We will hold regular calls with NDIA on Thursdays at 12pm during this time. Participants are expected to attend at least two (2) calls a month, and may attend more as needed. The purpose of these meetings is for coaching, discussing regional issues, gathering feedback, discussing challenges and wins, and identifying solutions.
June 22, 2022. Final assessments are due.
Who can I contact for more information?
Members of Mid-Hudson Library System should contact Casey Conlin or Kerstin Cuger.
Members of Ramapo Catskill Library System should contact Jen Park or Grace Riario.
All others should contact Carolyn Bennett Glauda at Southeastern NY Library Resources Council.
Digital Navigators of the Hudson Valley is supported with federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds allocated to the New York State Library by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).