September 29, 2023 |

NCF celebrates 31 years by reflecting and planning for the future

Happy birthday to us! National Capital FreeNet (NCF) was founded September 29, 1992: 31 years ago today.

Technology and the internet have changed nearly beyond recognition since those early days. NCF has been adapting to these changes while staying true to our original commitment to connect everyone in our community.

This time last year, we released videos featuring 30 digital equity advocates from across Canada on the current state of technology, the internet and digital equity: ncf.ca/digitalequityperspectives/

Interviews included the former Mayor of Iqaluit Madeleine Redfern, Ottawa professor Michael Geist, author and activist Cory Doctorow, and Eyra Abraham, founder of an app that helps those with hearing loss become aware of sounds in their environment. They also made predictions about the future for every five years from 2027 to 2052. Together these predictions form a digital time capsule and are locked until the year of their prediction date: ncf.ca/timecapsule/

Thirty-one is often a quieter celebration than 30 or the other big milestones. This year we’re celebrating by taking time to reflect and plan. This includes:

We also had help from Bashir Saidi and Kelly Huang, two summer students supported by the Canada Summer Jobs program, to develop some new digital skills resources, website updates and other improvements to our communications, coming soon!

Thanks to funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation Resilient Communities Fund, we will be hiring a coordinator to support a new digital skills workshop series — the first since before the pandemic — as well as to help recruit and train more volunteers for the HelpDesk, and other digital equity work. If you’re interested in applying, please keep an eye on our Careers page over the next few weeks: ncf.ca/careers/

Some of you have been NCF members since when we launched our dial-up community platform on February 1, 1993. Some of you may have just joined us. Thanks all of you for your support for NCF as a local not-for-profit alternative to commercial internet providers, committed to affordable internet as a right and ensuring digital equity for all. Here's to another good year!