All the deets about the new home for the Tenderloin Technology Lab are below.
Groundbreaking Tenderloin Project to Unveil Updated Digs – Celebration highlights 10-year partnership with USF
SAN FRANCISCO, May 4, 2011 — The Tenderloin Technology Lab (TTL), San Francisco Tenderloin’s only computer lab dedicated to giving homeless and low-income clients access to technology and helping them get jobs, is proud to debut a newly-refurbished home on the third floor of St. Anthony Foundation. Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, a generous supporter of the program, will speak at the unveiling on Thursday, May 12 from 1:30-3 p.m. at the Tenderloin Tech Lab, 150 Golden Gate Avenue.
The event is also a celebration of the decade long partnership between the University of San Francisco (USF) and the Tenderloin Technology Lab (TTL). Approximately 15 USF students and faculty members work at the lab every semester, providing tech-support, teaching classes, developing curriculum, and tutoring clients. USF’s work with the TTL is just one example of its commitment to the city of San Francisco through service-learning.
The Tenderloin Tech Lab, a partnership between St. Anthony Foundation and San Francisco Network Ministries to promote technology training and access to residents of the Tenderloin, helps nearly 100 homeless and low-income clients every day. Offerings include free computer classes, one-on-one tutoring, job search counseling and life skills courses– all designed specifically for the learning styles of adults struggling with poverty, addiction, mental health challenges or homelessness.
“Our relationship with The Tenderloin Technology Lab is a true partnership,” said Chris Brooks, USF associate dean for sciences and associate professor of computer science, who has been with the project from the beginning. “USF students and lab clients learn from one another. There is a terrific exchange of skills, knowledge, and ideas.”
The partnership began in 2001, when USF donated computer equipment and tech-support to both St. Anthony’s Foundation and San Francisco Network Ministries, which were running separate drop-in computer labs. During the economic downturn of 2008, demand skyrocketed, and the organizations collaborated to create the Tenderloin Technology Lab. The partnership continued to flourish, and in 2011, USF donated another 50 computers, as well and the time and people power needed to install the new systems.
Star Moore, associate director for community-based learning at USF’s Leo T. McCarthy Center for Public Service and the Common Good, says the university makes service-learning a priority and community partners such as St. Anthony Foundation are essential. “The lab has benefited from a variety of contributions provided by USF service-learners, while in return providing students with opportunities to learn about the digital divide and other social issues directly addressed through its services,” said Moore.
“Our lab would not be as successful without USF’s assistance,” said Karl Robillard, St. Anthony Foundation’s communications and outreach senior manager. “From the actual computer hardware to the time and care devoted to tech-support, USF is a vital piece of our community. I think this is a model of service-learning because it is a consistent and comprehensive partnership.”
At the May 12 event, attendees will hear brief remarks from Newmark, USF President Stephen A. Privett, S.J., Executive Director for St. Anthony Foundation Shari Roeseler, and Executive Director for San Francisco Network Ministries Glenda Hope. USF students and clients of the Tenderloin Tech Lab will share their experiences working together, and show a video highlighting the 10-year partnership.