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St. Louis County Library giving away 1,000 Chromebooks

The application to apply for a Chromebook is open from Sept. 19 until Oct. 1, 2023.

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — Residents who live within the St. Louis County Library district have the opportunity to apply to become the recipient of a Chromebook. 

The St. Louis County Library is giving away 1,000 internet-connected Chromebooks to residents, particularly those without the equipment and services to access the internet.

The funding for the Chromebooks came from the Emergency Connectivity Fund, a $7 billion program through the Federal Communications Commission, that helps schools and libraries provide the tools and services their communities need to access the internet, the library said in a news release. 

The application to apply for a Chromebook is open from Sept. 19 until Oct. 1, 2023.  

Those selected to receive a Chromebook will be notified by Oct. 6. Recipients will be able to pick up their computer at the SLCL branch indicated on their application.

Residents of any age can apply, but those younger than 18 must have a parent or guardian listed on the application. You do not need to have a SLCL library card to apply.

The Chromebooks are pre-loaded with unlimited data through June 30, 2024. The computers do not need to be returned to the library when internet services run out, the release said.

SLCL said it can't pay to replace lost or damaged Chromebooks and Chromebook chargers.

“Families and kids in our community need technology at home to live life to the fullest, with reliable and convenient access to the internet for both information, education and fun. Digital equity has been a priority for St. Louis County Library for many years," said Kristen Sorth, St. Louis County Library director & CEO in the release. "This funding will continue those efforts, by providing internet connected Chromebooks to those who need it most and where they need it most. We are honored to continue to help bridge the digital divide in our region.”

According to the release, the St. Louis Digital Divide Report found that in 2022, 150,000 households in St. Louis and St. Louis County struggled to afford high-speed internet access. 

The report also found that 90,000 people were unable to afford the adequate devices to access internet. 

The release said during the COVID-19 pandemic, SLCL helped support local students by providing 6,100 Chromebooks, 10,000 Wi-Fi hotspots and virtual and in-person tutoring services. SLCL also provided 3,000 GrandPad devices to adults during the pandemic.

Click here to apply to receive one of the 1,000 Chromebooks on the St. Louis County Library website. 

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