Plano-based Frito-Lay announced a partnership last week with LULAC National Educational Service Centers to support a free digital literacy program for Hispanic families for the second year.
Nearly half of Hispanic households include at least one member who is not digitally literate. About half of all Hispanics nationally say increased digital literacy and technology access would make life easier, according to a press release.
“Frito-Lay remains committed to supporting our Hispanic communities by providing the resources necessary to thrive in an increasingly digital world,” said Wilson Alarcon, Frito-Lay senior manager and president of Adelante Employee Resource Group for Frito-Lay. “Our commitment to ensuring equal opportunities for all is unwavering, and we’re proud to continue this program in the communities we call home.”
Frito-Lay is investing $150,000 to support 360 participants across six U.S. markets (Dallas, Topeka, Houston, Los Angelos, San Antonio and Vancouver), following the partnership’s inaugural success.
According to a press release, last year’s participants were surveyed and reported that 51.5% of participants were not fully confident with technology prior to the program, whereas 100% of participants became more confident with technology after completion.
“What began as a call to action to create access to online resources for struggling families during the wake of the pandemic has proven digital literacy to be essential not only in times of crisis, but as a necessity in everyday life,” said LNESC Executive Director Richard Roybal. “We are excited to find creative and innovative methods to bring digital education and understanding of technology to families in the communities we serve.”
The program, titled Pathways to Uplift and Empower through Novel Technology and Education Services (P.U.E.N.T.E.S), teaches computer basics and practical digital skills through a synchronous virtual class. Digital equipment such as laptops, tablets, software and internet access will be provided to families to participants.
“This program honors Hispanic Heritage Month and complements PepsiCo’s Racial Equality Journey (REJ) Hispanic Initiative, a $172 million set of commitments to increase representation within its workforce, support Hispanic-owned businesses and help create economic opportunities in Hispanic American communities,” a press release said. “This REJ initiative reinforces Frito-Lay’s long-standing commitment and history of helping local communities across America for more than 90 years.”