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Conscious SF: Homelessness and Technology: Why Access is a Basic Need

From access to the Internet and communications (like a cell phone) to the opportunity to learn basic computer skills - technology is a requirement in our daily lives. Unfortunately for someone experiencing homelessness, limited access to technology is a huge barrier to establishing stability and escaping poverty. Join us for a discussion with the people who work on the frontline of poverty alleviation and empower others with access to technology. Understand how technology can be an element to alleviation and where you can support as part of the community. 


Our Panel of Speakers

Julie Berlin -Manager of the Tenderloin Tech Lab, St. Anthony's Foundation 

Julie manages the Tenderloin Technology Lab, the Tenderloin’s only free technology center specializing in bridging the digital divide and looking for technology solutions for issues of poverty. Her varied experience in adult education, workforce development and communications has given her opportunities to teach, mediate, coach, lead, serve and most importantly, learn. Julie has worked with some of San Francisco’s most well-established and respected organizations, including St. Anthony Foundation, UCSF, the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco and Jewish Vocational Service, where Julie created an award-winning workforce development program. An alumna of UC Santa Cruz and San Francisco State University, Julie hails from a family of educators and inventors and is proud to carry on in the footsteps of her father who was at the forefront of getting computers into K-8 classrooms across the country in the 1970's.

Kristin Keller - Assistant Director, Compass Family Resource | Test Program Coordinator at The NeighborhoodNest

Kristin Keller, MA, has been providing direct service to displaced families since 2009. Following several years in refugee resettlement, Ms. Keller came to Compass Family Services in 2014 to provide case management and employment support to homeless families in her hometown of San Francisco. With a background in program development and non-profit administration, Ms. Keller received an MA in Applied Anthropology in 2013. She is a frequent guest lecturer at San Jose State University, and currently serves on the Communications Committee of the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA).

Jen Padgett - CEO, Community Technology Alliance

Jen Padgett is the CEO of the Silicon Valley nonprofit Community Technology Alliance (CTA). Jen’s personal motto is: 'If You Can Dream it, You Can Do it!'  This phrase embodies all that Jen does in her business and personal endeavors.  Jen’s work at CTA involves developing data-driven solutions to poverty and homelessness by shaping local, state, and national policy surrounding technology implementation and data collection.  Jen has extensive experience providing assistance and advice to agencies and communities who have implemented social service data collection and management information systems. Passionate about her work - Jen believes that it is possible to end homelessness.  Big Dream? Yes, but she wouldn't have it any other way!

Moderated by Meghan Murphy, HandUp.org