Digital Opportunity

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Digital Opportunity, according to the National Digital Inclusion Alliance, is a condition in which all individuals and communities have the information technology capacity needed for full participation in our society, democracy, and economy. Digital opportunity is necessary for civic and cultural participation, employment, lifelong learning, and access to essential services.

The Department of Housing and Community Development's Office of Broadband (DHCD) has received and been authorized to administer the State Digital Equity Act Planning Grant Program. After incorporating public comments and updating the plan, DHCD has submitted Virginia's Digital Opportunity Plan to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), the administrators of the State Digital Equity Program, including the Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce for consideration. The Office of Broadband held Community Input Sessions to discuss Virginia's Digital Opportunity Plan and the presentation and recordings can be found below. This page will be updated as more opportunities become available.

Virginia Affordability and Adoption Planning Grant (VAAPG) Application Process

The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) is excited to announce the application process for the Virginia Broadband Affordability and Adoption Planning Grant Program! Eligible applicants for this program include county, city, and tribal governments.
 
The purpose of this program is to conduct needs assessments, identify priorities, and develop plans with implementation strategies to address and promote digital opportunity in their communities. This program’s intended goal is to provide eligible applicants an opportunity to prepare for governmental and philanthropic funding and program opportunities, such as the BEAD non-deployment and federal Digital Equity Act funds. 

DHCD’s Office of Broadband hosted a ‘How-To-Apply’ webinar on the application process on February 20th. Representatives from units of local government, tribal governments, and other interested stakeholders were encouraged to attend to learn about the grant application process. The webinar discussed an overview of the program, plan requirements, application requirements, the application process, and other important information for applicants. Both the PowerPoint presentation and a recording of the webinar are available below.

If you have any questions, email the Digital Opportunity inbox at digitalopportunity@dhcd.virginia.gov. 


Virginia Digital Opportunity Plan

The Office of Broadband has published the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Digital Opportunity Plan, as required under the State Digital Equity Planning Grant Program from the Digital Equity Act Program (DE).
 
This document reflects the version as re-submitted to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) for consideration after the public comment period and feedback from NTIA’s initial curing edits, as well as second round of curing edits, were considered and incorporated. This document does not reflect the final version, which may include additional edits as requested by NTIA to be in compliance with the DEA Program. 


Commonwealth of Virginia Digital Opportunity Plan

The Office of Broadband has published the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Digital Opportunity Plan, as required under the State Digital Equity Planning Grant Program from the Digital Equity Act Program (DE).

This document reflects the version as submitted to the National Telecommunications and Information Association (NTIA) for consideration after the public comment period. These documents do not reflect the final versions, which may include additional edits as requested by NTIA to be in compliance with the DE Program

 


Regional Digital Opportunity Plans

Program Purpose

DHCD is partnering with the Department of Social Services, the Virginia Community Action Partnership, and Community Action Agencies to develop Regional Digital Opportunity Plans. Across nine regions, Community Action Agencies are assessing the digital divide through stakeholder engagement, survey distribution and data analysis, and community input sessions to develop regional plans that address identified community needs related to the digital divide. The nine regions, as well as the lead Community Action Agency for each regional plan, are listed in the map

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Digital Opportunity Case Study Pilot Program

Program Purpose

The intent of this program is to bring organizations working to close the digital divide into the state’s planning process. The objective of this grant opportunity is to identify best practices of initiatives/efforts that are addressing the digital divide in communities throughout Virginia. DHCD will provide grant funding to the organizations operating these programs, with the deliverable of a case study highlighting key findings, which DHCD will incorporate into the Commonwealth Digital Opportunity Plan.

How to Apply

Eligible organizations to participate in this program are listed under the "Eligibility" tab on this page. Groups interested in applying should review the Program Guidelines, which are also under the "Resources" tab on this page. Applications will be accepted and evaluated by DHCD on a rolling basis, until all available funds are committed. Interested organizations are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to begin development of their case study if selected. This page will be updated when all available funds are committed.