Greenlight Networks Selects 716 Ministries as First Buffalo Community Partner

716 Ministries to benefit from free internet services, network construction underway.

  • Greenlight Networks

BUFFALO, N.Y.--Greenlight Networks announced its first community partnership in Buffalo with 716 Ministries. Construction of Greenlight’s network is well underway in the neighborhoods surrounding the west side non-profit, which empowers individuals and transforms neighborhoods through job training, construction services, and facilities support in Western New York. Residents in these areas are now able to place pre-orders for high-speed Internet service which is expected to be available later this quarter.

In 2020, Greenlight sought a community partner, as it has in the Rochester market, to host network equipment in exchange for complimentary high speed fiber broadband service. “While our field techs and engineers were designing the network over the past several months, we met with community leaders and elected officials to learn more about the region. The message we kept hearing was how important it was for the community to benefit from Greenlight’s expansion to the region,” said Mark Murphy, President and CEO of Greenlight Networks. “At a time when internet is acknowledged as essential, we want to support community organizations that impact the neighborhoods they serve. We reached out to several organizations in the area, and partnering with 716 Ministries was a perfect fit as it provides an opportunity for Greenlight to support 716 Ministries in furthering its mission to train, build and serve the communities of Western New York.”

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz added, “Providing access to high-speed internet will result in expanded opportunities to so many who currently live in under-served areas. This will help end the digital divide that has left far too many people behind. We have heard over the past few years what the needs are and what people desire when it comes to improving internet access. This unique community collaboration will help address concerns related to numerous virtual programs, including remote learning, work-from-home opportunities and tele-health services.”

The fiber-broadband provider’s effort to secure a community partner was aided by Leadership Buffalo’s network when program alumni connected Greenlight with Stephanie Smith, non-profit consultant, and member of the BUMP (Buffalo Urban Mission Partnership) Leadership Team.

“This Greenlight connection through Leadership Buffalo was such a welcome opportunity,” said Smith. “The building we selected is unique, as it was formerly part of the Our Lady of Loretto Catholic campus, and now houses young adults living in community together on the West Side, including BUMP (Buffalo Urban Mission Partnership), AmeriCorps, and City Year members. I love Greenlight's desire to set up in churches, community centers, or nonprofits that will benefit from free high-speed internet in exchange for a small amount of space for equipment. This will be a huge, long term benefit to the residents of the Loretto rectory.”

716 Ministries Executive Director Jeremy Hazelton remarked, “Whether it’s the residents of the Loretto Rectory, students and teachers at Strong Academy or Jericho Road’s Parent Child+, the entire campus will benefit from faster Internet speeds to support our mission and work on site and out in the field.”

Beyond its initial build plans unveiled earlier this year, Greenlight announced that it plans to provide service to the Buffalo Grant and Buffalo West Side districts later this year. The company expects its high-speed Internet service to be available to nearly 10,000 homes across the Buffalo Niagara region by the end of 2021. Greenlight will start accepting pre-orders in additional areas in the city of Buffalo in the coming months and will add more neighborhoods to its construction schedule for 2022.

“By connecting people, we inspire change and are thrilled to be able to play a small part in this development,” shared Leadership Buffalo CEO, Althea Luehrsen.

Greenlight customers enjoy fiber broadband network speeds as high as 2 Gbps, with a base speed of 500 Mbps. Fiber internet provides the best possible online experience for remote learning and work, telehealth, gaming or streaming high-quality video and supports simultaneous connections across multiple devices. 

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