Currently, there are no programs consistently happening at the site other than a weekly Girls Scouts meeting, although a variety of programs have happened in the past including after school homework help, English classes, and GRE prep.
After the upgrade, Shadow Wood and our community partner CU-Citizen Access are hoping to have the lab open more consistently to 1) provide a stable place for Shadow Wood residents to obtain Internet access; 2) provide a place for community outreach programs including homework help, English Classes, GRE prep, etc; and, 3) provide CU-Citizen Access a place to foster community journalism within the Hispanic community of Champaign County.
In addition we hope to create a multi-functional space that will allow space for additional community activities like arts and crafts, etc.
The space at Shadow Wood is strictly defined and we must work within the constraints of the two rooms within the community center. The only changes we will be making to the space are cosmetic. We believe the idea scenario for the space is having computers be a supplemental part of the space with layout designed to foster physical interaction between people, as well as space to allow for additional meetings (such as Girl Scouts) and activities.
These are photographs of the space as it stands at the beginning of the project.
We have several resources available to use we hope to utilize. The park manager of Shadow Wood is working to secure $500 from the owner for cosmetic upgrades to the space (paint, blinds, etc). We hope to utilize up to five students from Action Research.Illinois on the weekend of October 28-29 to help complete these cosmetic changes.
We also hope to utilize up to the full $700 from the GSLIS fund for furniture.
Finally, Shadow Wood already has Internet, all the computers we need, a printer, and most of the networking cables and hardware we will need.
Our highest priority for the site is to provide a space for the residents of Shadow Wood to have consistent Internet access. We need to provide the mostly Hispanic community access to an OS and software in Spanish as well. Although ensuring longevity of the project is an essential component of this project, this is being manage by CU-Citizen Access.
We plan to provide the community with two potential working models (Windows computer in English, dual boot with Windows in English and Linux in Spanish) for the October 8th community day. We hope to open the computer lab with the help C-U Citizen Access to gain some knowledge on the preferences of the residents for the computers we will ultimately install.