Northwest Minnesota Foundation Receives Blandin Foundation Grant to Boost Area Business Broadband Use

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Northwest Minnesota Foundation (NMF) has received funding from the Blandin Foundation for one of 13 projects that assist rural Minnesota communities in advancing high-speed Internet access.

 NMF will work with area businesses to take advantage of more online resources available through high-speed Internet, with the support of a $12,970 Blandin Foundation broadband grant.  This work will occur as part of the regional IMPACT 20/20 Business Broadband Initiative. 

 “The Blandin Foundation’s commitment to better broadband access and use in rural Minnesota is admirable and we are honored to receive their support,” said Nancy Vyskocil, Northwest Minnesota Foundation president. “Through the IMPACT 20/20 Business Broadband Advantage grant, we will execute a well-planned Hackfest to drive technology vitality and training workshops to help businesses in the region improve their web and social media presence to result in more business. We are excited that through this partnership we can continue fostering the development of broadband in rural Minnesota.”

The IMPACT 20/20 Business Broadband Advantage project will seek to increase the number of businesses within the region that are taking advantage of broadband, increase the sophistication and depth of technology use among those that are employing broadband minimally, and to enhance the technological vitality of communities in the region.

 “Rural leaders know that connected communities are vibrant communities,” said Dr. Kathleen Annette, CEO of Blandin Foundation. “We are delighted to see how Northwest Minnesota Foundation is engaging those they serve to explore new opportunities for area businesses made possible by high-speed Internet.”

Since making rural broadband use and access a focus in 2003, Blandin Foundation has partnered with leaders in more than 100 communities and organizations across the state to support sustainable broadband adoption to enhance quality of life and place.