Grant to KU will help create digital literacy program for women leaving prison, jail

A nearly $250,000 grant will allow University of Kansas researchers to create new programs aimed at improving the digital literacy of women who are being released from prison or jail.

KU’s Center for Digital Inclusion has received the grant from the Kansas Health Foundation to begin creating programs for women in northeast Kansas, including Douglas County.

The project will create training programs that can be offered to women before they are released from prison. The programs will help ensure that the women have basic computer skills and know what is available online and how to take advantage of the many digital resources that exist.

“We’ll all work together to discuss and come up with a framework for offering technology training to women nearing release,” said Hyunjin Seo, a KU journalism professor and founding director of the Center for Digital Inclusion at KU’s journalism school. “The training will continue post-release as well.”

In addition to teaching women how to use digital skills for finding employment and other such common tasks, the program also will include sessions on evaluating the accuracy of online information and protecting against misinformation and identity theft.

The project will involve partnerships with several organizations, including the Lawrence Public Library and the corrections departments in Johnson and Shawnee counties and the sheriff’s department in Wyandotte County.


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