The Los Angeles Public Library offers the Cybernauts initiative to advance digital equity in Los Angeles. Cybernauts help people and communities develop the information technology capacities needed to participate in society, democracy, and the economy fully.
Trained Cybernaut computer aides help people operate their phones, tablets, or other computer devices. Computer aides show people how to use the Library’s extensive collection of digital media, including e-books, fill out online forms, use social media and email, find information online, and more. The initiative operates at Central Library and 36 neighborhood library branches citywide—where computer aides assist people in-person and on-demand. During COVID-related Library closures, computer aides now offer technical support by phone, text, and chat. Later this year, the Library will offer the service with online video support, launch digital literacy classes and workshops, and provide information about low-cost and at-home broadband Internet services.
The Cybernauts initiative also provides part-time employment, training, and professional development to young adults who typically serve as computer aides. Cybernaut computer aides often live in the communities of the libraries that they support.
The Cybernauts program at the Los Angeles Public Library is supported by the generosity of:
- Annenberg Foundation
- Rose Hills Foundation
- California Public Utilities Commission
- BCM Foundation
- The Friends of the Chinatown Library
- Friends of Westwood Library
- Pacific Palisades Library Association
- Flora Thornton Endowment
- Stay Home and Read a Book Ball