WHY WE DO IT
ZeroDivide believes we can only sustain social change and achieve equity by integrating the tools of technology into community transformation strategies.
Over the past 15 years, ZeroDivide has used a big picture view to include technology sector advances, changing market realities, social trends and public policy to build opportunities for social change in civic engagement, economic inclusion and health improvement outcomes of underserved and vulnerable communities.
We believe in co-design, implementation and evaluation of technology solutions focused on the needs and conditions of the most marginalized lead to relevant, scalable and cost-effective solutions for the majority.
ZeroDivide came into existence in 1998 as a result of groundbreaking advocacy and coalition building by leaders of 134 community-based organizations representing low-income and immigrant communities, communities of color and people with disabilities. These organizations sought and received $50 million as a result of the merger between PacBell and SBC. This independent fund was established to close the digital divide in California. Over 12 years, ZeroDivide (originally called the Community Technology Foundation of California) funded more than 400 community-based technology related programs, including several internally operated initiatives.
As the Community Technology Foundation of California, our work met the needs of underserved communities to equalize access to technology and telecommunications. After 14 years of grant-making, we transformed into a 501(c)3 enterprise because our work was not done. We know the digital divide still exists in underserved communities and requires our trusted approach to build change and social equity. Our work continues to center on directly addressing digital equity issues with organizations serving the underserved.
In 2011, we expanded our work to include eHealth equity -- we work on the design, adoption and evaluation of digital health tools that are specifically geared towards engaging underserved consumers/patients and their providers to improve health access and outcomes. Our work within this realm spans “enrollment to outcomes”, from online tools that improve the health insurance enrollment process, improved digital patient data capture and analysis methods, to increasing health literacy and care coordination through culturally competent content applications for medically underserved populations.