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The Beehive of One Economy Corporation

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An organization that gives low-income families the tools to improve their lives by bringing them access to technology.


One Economy is a multi-national nonprofit organization created to be a catalyst for innovation and change. Recognizing the lack of access to technology in the new age of information, One Economy attempts to bring this access into the homes of low-income people around the country to connect them to information and tools they can use to build assets and improve their lives. One Economy provides broadband services to low-income individuals and allows them to connect with one another at their multilingual website: the Beehive.

Nuts and Bolts:

  • Launched in 2001, the Beehive is a website that was created to connect low-income people to user-friendly information and resources that matter most to them: health, jobs, money, education, and family.
  • The site provides multilingual content (in English and Spanish with specific content sections in additional languages such as Chinese and Hmong) at a literacy level that the targeted audience can use and understand.
  • One Economy has developed 25 localized versions which provide area-specific information. Additionally, The Beehive also offers a free, easy to use e-mail service called BeeMail, available in English and Spanish.
  • One Economy has 45 employees plus a number of interns. With an extensive outreach of 11 local offices and over 200 partners who all assist in identifying the specific on-site issues of importance to their communities. Some of their most notable corporate partners include: Google, The Brookings Institute, AT&T and Starbucks, among a host of others.
  • The local One Economy offices implement a Beehive outreach program through hands-on training sessions and marketing events conducted by youth technology advocates known as "Digital Connectors." "Digital Connectors" are also located in various local One Economy offices.
  • Other campaigns such as "The Sweet Life," which has been implemented in Chicago, includes posters in buses and bus stops, and giveaway postcards.

Successes:

  • The Beehive now receives more than 300,000 unique visitors a month, over 70% of whom come from zip codes in the lowest income census tracts.
  • 8,320 people learned about and took action to file for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) on the Beehive during the 2005 tax season.
  • 57,000 kids a month use the Beehive for homework help during the school year.
  • In the last year, over 20,000 people created and saved business plans on the Entrepreneurs Center on the Beehive. (This was highlighted in an article in The Wall Street Journal.)

For more information on this program: One Economy Corporation, The Beehive

 
 
 
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