The villages of Kodiak are each individually unique although, they all share some of the same challenges. Access is restricted to boat and plane. The infrastructures that support the villages are modest at best. This is quite a contrast to the huge benefit to the community that can be gain through the implementation of broadband internet services. Currently the Internet is available in every village on Kodiak. However, the quality of service can vary dramatically.
For a rural isolated village, access to the Internet can make a dramatic difference in peoples’ everyday lives. From ordering household goods online, to studding for a school project, access is a major concern. Providing Internet service can be a very expensive monthly bill for many families that live in the villages. One community member in Port Lions has three different Internet services so she can avoid having her speed throttled or slowed to an unusable speed. A tribal library can act as a way for the communities to gain access to broadband internet service where it may otherwise not be feasible.
The Alutiiq Museum has partnered with the tribes in the villages to establish media centers. These media centers will allow community members access to the Internet using Alutiiq Museum managed Chromebooks. The Alutiiq online Chromebooks are pre programmed with links for people to learn about Alutiiq culture and all the museum’s online content as well as digital education courses. This effort will not only help the tribes in the Kodiak Archipelago to begin the process of becoming a certified tribal library that is eligible to apply for E-rate funding to help support their community’s needs.