Celebrating 10 Years of Digital Stewardship

This October marks the 10-year anniversary of Digital Stewardship in Detroit. Over these years, the Detroit Community Technology Project (DCTP) has trained Digital Stewards to organize their neighborhoods and build networks to get free and low cost internet access to Detroiters.

As members of the Community Technology Collective, CTNY has worked alongside DCTP to build Digital Stewardship programs across New York State and beyond. We’re proud to recognize the work and leadership of our movement partners, and we’re excited to see what the next 10 years will bring. Read on to learn more about Digital Stewardship.


Who are Digital Stewards?

Digital Stewards are local residents, organizers, and neighborhood leaders who are trained to strengthen the digital resources in their communities.

Digital Stewards‍ build and maintain networks, demystify technology for their friends and neighbors, and facilitate a healthy integration of technology into people’s lives. Together with their communities, Digital Stewards ensure that everyone can access the fundamental human right to communication.

For the last 10 years, the Detroit Digital Technology Project and CTNY staff have worked with anchor organizations in Detroit, NYC, and other US sites to train Digital Stewards and build community networks.

In NYC, Hunts Point Digital Stewards started building their network in 2018 and have since built new nodes with more small business partners and started their own training program. In Brooklyn, Digital Stewards working with El Puente recently built their first Portable Network Kit and are working to organize community members around issues of digital and environmental justice. 

In Detroit, DCTP addresses internet access issues through the Equitable Internet Initiative (EII). The EII is a partnership with anchor organizations across Detroit, including Grace in Action in Southwest, Church of the Messiah in Islandview, and the North End Woodward Community Coalition (NEWCC) in the North End and Highland Park neighborhoods.

Recently, DCTP raised over $5000 to support Church of the Messiah’s BLVD Harambee program. BLVD Harambee works to provide high-speed internet to the local community and hands-on training to assist young people with developing skills that could lead to possible employment or entrepreneurship.

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