“Connecting the Unconnected”
Christian Outreach in Action has acquired one more way aside from food and shelter to help those in the Long Beach community who may be homeless, impoverished or temporarily in a rough spot. The nondenominational, nonprofit corporation housed in a 1920s-built church building in downtown Long Beach just opened a small, but operational computer lab last week. Through a Social Service Grant by the city of Long Beach and with the six computers donated by Chapman University, COA updated and remodeled a room in its building for the computer lab. Mike Giard, COA computer lab coordinator, said it took a few months to get the room ready for the computers. “This building is really old, so power requirements and setting up for the internet and things like that were a challenge that we had to overcome,” said Giard. “My goal now is to make sure that we reach all the different clients that we help here at COA. We focus a lot on the homeless and low income, and I know there are a lot of Spanish speaking families out there that would benefit as well.” He said the site will offer computer classes soon. Check back for updates. Diane Donaldson, COA board member, said the hope is to connect those who are not familiar with computers to the services that most people are accustomed to — e-mail, job listings and social networking sites to stay in touch with, or find family. Our computer lab is free and open to everyone Tuesdays through Fridays, 2 pm to 4:30 pm. We also have a Spanish evening on Thursdays, 6 pm to 8 pm. Contact Mike Giard at (562) 432-1440 for more information, or to volunteer.