CLOSE THE DIVIDE
The Garrigan Lyman Group
In March 2020, when the pandemic closed Idaho Schools, online learning took over. But many students didn’t have computers at home or Internet access. Idaho Business For Education jumped into action to help those students finishing out the school year.
In June 2020, Rod Gramer, CEO of IBE run a survey to identify the needs of Idaho students. They found out that about 176,000 kids in Idaho didn’t have a computer at home, which represents half of the students of the area, and also that between 30-35,000 students didn’t have Internet.
GLG created a public information campaign called “Close the Divide” to raise awareness about the digital divide problem. The campaign included media strategy, branding, print, broadcast and social media materials in order to reach a wide audience. Using its state-wide organization of about 250 business leaders, IBE created 7 teams around the state in the major cities to collect computers and funds.
Over 170,000 computers were donated and more than $500,000 raised to support Idaho students and their virtual learning. As the pandemic continues and remote learning remains in the new school year, IBE’s Close the Divide campaign marches on.