Connecting Kodiak is the name of the project that has taken form to bring digital inclusion to the Kodiak Archipelago. There has been a great amount of community interest in the project from around the island. At a presentation last week, where the remote villages of Kodiak came together to discuss important topics, there were so many questions about the project the meeting went on well into the afternoon. The interest in the project has been phenomenal. It shows by the sheer amount of enthusiasm on everyone’s faces when they discuss including their village in the digital age.
The importance and the need for digital inclusion has been on many peoples’ minds. In the days after the completion of the project plan a partnership was made to integrate the plan into the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the region. Kodiak Rural Regional Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy is a document developed to advance infrastructure in the villages. It covers a wide range of topics including business, fisheries, food security, electrical infrastructure, and technology. The program is being developed by Kodiak Area Native Association and is funded by the US Economic Development Administration. This partnership will give Connecting Kodiak the sustainability that a regional technology initiative needs to realize successful digital inclusion outcomes for years to come.