BEVERLY HILLS, Calif.—The David Bohnett Foundation announced today grants totaling $500,000 to refresh 29 of its visionary, community-based CyberCenters with brand new state-of-the-art equipment.
Technology entrepreneur and philanthropist David Bohnett’s CyberCenters provide LGBT communities with a “wired” hub through which its members could network, communicate, and explore educational, professional and recreational opportunities. In 2004, the Refresh Program was established; each CyberCenter is now updated every three to four years.
Locations included in the 2014 refresh program are Atlanta, Bay Shore, Cleveland, Columbus, Denver, Fort Collins, Fort Lauderdale, Jersey City, Kingston, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Madison, Miami, Milwaukee, New York City, Philadelphia, Riverside, Rochester, St Petersburg, San Jose, Santa Ana, Tampa, Tulsa, Salt Lake City, UC Santa Barbara, UC Riverside, University of Pennsylvania, University of Utah and Washington, D.C.
“The David Bohnett CyberCenters are places where gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender people can comfortably get on a computer, access services and network with each other in a nurturing and supportive atmosphere,” Paul Moore, program officer of the David Bohnett Foundation said. “The CyberCenters have proven to be a lifeline for people of all ages— from youth who may find themselves without a support system—to seniors, who may have little or no familiarity with computers. In today’s increasingly Internet-driven world, we are happy to provide regular ‘refresh’ grants enabling groups to keep pace with the many advances in computer hardware and software.”
Equipment upgrades include up to fifteen state-of-the-art, all-in-one PC or MAC workstations as well as high profile printers and scanners for each CyberCenter.
“The David Bohnett CyberCenter continues to serve as a tremendous asset and resource to The Center and the clients we serve,” says The LGBTQ Long Beach Center’s executive director Porter Gilberg. “Thanks to the generosity of the David Bohnett Foundation and their grant to The Center, we are able to support hundreds of clients every month that would otherwise be without access to computers. The CyberCenter remains a thriving and central place for our clients and greatly supports our efforts to connect, inform and enrich our vibrant community.”
“Since the University of California-Riverside CyberCenter opened in 2006, it has become more than a resource. It is really an integral part of the school’s LGBT community space,” said LGBT Resource Center Director Nancy Tubbs. “Many students, including those who are not out to their families or fellow students, are very careful about people seeing their Internet history. They can be uncomfortable writing papers on LGBT issues or doing research on the subject. The CyberCenter provides a safe place for students to access the internet, and it is great outreach for students who take advantage of printer access and other resources.”
The very first David Bohnett CyberCenter opened its doors in 1998 at the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center. The CyberCenter was an immediate hit, and served as the model for similar facilities throughout the United States. There are now 60 David Bohnett CyberCenters nationwide. They serve as prime examples of the Foundation’s commitment to making leading-edge technology available to the traditionally underserved LGBT demographic.
David Bohnett Foundation
Since 1999, the David Bohnett Foundation (www.bohnettfoundation.org) has been committed to improving society through social activism, and has provided funding, state-of-the-art technology and technical support to innovative organizations and institutions. Grants totaling over $50m to date have been given in several primary funding areas: The Fund for Los Angeles, supporting a broad spectrum of arts, educational and civic programs; LGBT-related causes; voting rights and registration initiatives; supporting research and public policies to reduce the toll of firearm violence; and animal research and rights.
David Bohnett serves as Chair of the David Bohnett Foundation; the head of the private equity firm Baroda Ventures and was the founder of GeoCities.com, an Internet based media and e-commerce company in 1994. GeoCities was acquired by Yahoo! in 1999. His goals are improving lives, empowering individuals and building viable communities by connecting like-minded people in meaningful ways. Also central to Bohnett’s vision is his call to action to aspiring philanthropists to begin their giving by getting personally involved with causes with which they identify so that they can experience service first-hand.