Looking Ahead

publishedabout 2 months ago
3 min read

looking ahead with suma

October 20, 2023

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editor's note

suma friends, we’re currently in the process of polishing up our newsletter. One change we’re making is that you can now expect us in your inbox with bimothly updates and news from the suma team! Today, we are excited to share our first look at our winter plans, updates on the government’s progress on expanding internet access to , and some insight on frontline communities our platform’s development. Thank you for being here and supporting our work!

-Jacqueline

suma milestones

As we are enjoying the changing color of leaves, here at suma we are getting the team together to begin planning how we will bring food to the tables of our community members for a holiday special. We’re looking forward to partnering with other local businesses, as well as community institutions, to assist us in this project of providing folks with affordable necessities through our app. Last year, we launched the suma app with our holiday special, "turkey hacking." We successfully achieved our goal, with 50 users ordering meals, all of which were fulfilled with the assistance of our partners. We saved those who participated over $8,000! If you’re interested in teaming up with us for the holiday project, or want to offer deals on our app beyond the season, please contact us!

community catch-up

Updates on digital justice news

  • The Initial BEAD (Broadband Equity Access and Deployment) Proposal Vol. 1 draft is open for public comment until 5 p.m. October 20, 2023. Volume 1 focused on identifying areas that would be eligible for funding as well as what the challenge process could look like. Of note, community anchor institutions, including nonprofits, are eligible to challenge a service provider’s service availability and performance.
  • The rules on HB 3201 were made public and are open to public comment until 10/23. These rule changes are a direct result of the changes made to the Oregon Broadband Fund during the most recent legislative session, and would not have been possible without the support of urban community institutions. Of note, is the Oregon Broadband Office’s decision to not have review of the rules from an advisory committee. Part of the public comment suma will be submitting is to encourage the OBO to utilize advisory committees representing the diverse needs of our state in future rulemaking processes- especially when it comes to the upcoming digital equity specific funding

Funding updates regarding digital justice

  • The US Department of Treasury recently announced the approval of $156.7M in funding for Oregon via the Broadband Deployment Program. According to the Treasury press release, this funding will connect approximately 17,195 homes and businesses to affordable, high-speed internet.

suma app updates

  • Suma and Lime have been working on a first-of-its-kind integration between our apps. Through this integration, suma users will be able to find and ride Lime e-scooters starting from the suma app, automatically qualify for Lime discounts, and enjoy enhanced financial and transportation privacy. Our team combined with the team at Lime are testing integration for having users ready to go, in just three steps! Stop by our King Farmers Market booth (NE 7th & Wygant, Sundays from 10a-2p through November 19) if you want to help us test the integration.
  • This month, we’ve started collecting feedback from users about the suma app. At King Farmers Market and St Johns Farmers Market, it’s been great to see users stopping by the suma booth to share their ideas with a whiteboard and dry erase markers. They’re telling us what they like about the app (“makes money go further” “able to buy things I wouldn’t otherwise” “feeling taken care of in my community”) and what they want to see more of (“more farmers markets” “bus and e-bikes” “used in more stores”). User trust and feedback are critical to growing the suma app, and we’ll keep collecting feedback throughout the market season.

suma

suma is nonprofit based in Portland, OR (USA), we create platforms for digital organizing, enterprise and justice.

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