About Balanced Access

Balanced Access (BA) is a non-profit organization created to eliminate the digital divide within our local community. Balanced Access intends to bring fast, dependable internet access to students and teachers within the Morgan Hill, San Martin and Gilroy area who need internet access regardless of their financial situation.

What is the Digital Divide?

The digital divide is defined as the gap that exists between those who have reliable internet access and devices and those with very limited access or none at all.

The digital divide is a problem that affects people from all walks of life. It is a multifaceted issue, but two main characteristics define this gap: access to high-speed internet and access to reliable devices. Many of the individuals who struggle from the digital divide face both. In some areas, internet access is either limited, unavailable, or unaffordable for those who could be equipped. Even with a reliable internet connection, access to certain digital spaces can remain a challenge, always just out of reach for those who can’t afford costly tools like laptops and software. This leaves countless students and professionals to rely on public computers or their mobile devices as their only tools to exist in an increasingly digital world. It leaves many more, like those in rural areas or living under the poverty line, without even that. (Definition and explanation obtained from https://www.closethegapfoundation.org.)

Balanced Access (BA) is the brainchild of Elise Brentnall, South Valley Internet’s Chief Operations Officer. SVI is one of the oldest independent Internet Service Providers in the nation with over 25 years of experience deploying Copper, Wireless and Fiber solutions. Many of the businesses and residents in the area call SVI their preferred provider. SVI specializes in bringing broadband services to those areas that the cable and telephone companies choose to ignore. Simply put, SVI goes where the big boys won’t because there isn’t enough return on investment for the Fat Cats to bother. Despite our strong desire to assist, SVI is only able to help a fraction of those in need while sustaining our business. With that being said, South Valley Internet is dedicated to devoting its knowledge, expertise, man power, and bandwidth to being part of the solution. The million-dollar question though is how to fund the builds. This is where Balanced Access can change the landscape of broadband deployment in our community for the better.

With over 1300 to 1400 families in the Morgan Hill area alone desperately needing reliable service, Balanced Access will raise the funds necessary to build and deploy Wireless Infrastructure that will deliver 100Mbps service to those in need in South Santa Clara County. Specifically, children and their families who are in the Morgan Hill and Gilroy Unified School Districts’ jurisdictions. Funds donated to Balanced Access will be used to pay for the expenses associated with the following:

  • Physical construction
  • Radios
  • Points of Presence (PoPs) Rent
  • Access Points (APs)
  • Network Hardware
  • Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) for both inside and outside plant construction