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Digital Inclusion Education Telehealth Through the Trees

Through the Trees – Dogwood Health Trust Partner in:​ “Health & Wellness”

DHT or Dogwood Health Trust’s purpose is to dramatically improve the health and wellbeing of all people and communities of Western North Carolina.

So why would the Dogwood Health Trust categorize ‘Through the Trees,’ a computer device refurbisher in Brevard, NC; a ‘health & wellness’ partner?

Computer device refurbishers may fall under the health and wellness category in philanthropy for several reasons:

  1. Digital Inclusion: Providing affordable devices can promote access to healthcare services and information, enhancing overall well-being.
  2. Education: Refurbished computers can aid in health education, enabling people to make informed decisions about their health.
  3. Mental Health: Access to technology can alleviate feelings of isolation and provide mental health resources.
  4. Environmental Impact: Refurbishing reduces e-waste, contributing to a healthier environment.

“About – Dogwood Health Trust.” 2023. Dogwood Health Trust. March 8, 2023.

“Through the Trees – Dogwood Health Trust.” 2023. Dogwood Health Trust. October 27, 2023.

“Through the Trees.” 2023. Through the Trees. 2023.

Broadband access Community Development Refurbishment of devices

Computer & Smartphone Device Refurbishment Strategies to help a Community

Strategies for computer and smartphone device refurbishment to benefit a community include:

  • Donation Drives: Organize local collection events to gather unused devices.
  • Assessment & Inventory: Catalog devices and assess their condition for refurbishment.
  • Hardware Upgrades: Update RAM, SSD, and batteries where needed.
  • Data Wiping: Securely erase all data to prepare for new users.
  • Software Installation: Install open-source or discounted software licenses.
  • Skill Training: Train volunteers or local tech students to carry out refurbishment tasks.
  • Community Partnerships: Collaborate with local businesses for sponsorship or resources.
  • Distribution: Identify community members or organizations in need and distribute the refurbished devices.
  • Tech Support: Offer free or low-cost ongoing maintenance services.
  • Metrics & Feedback: Collect data on the project’s impact and make adjustments as needed.

In Western North Carolina, ‘Through the Trees’ in Brevard has a storefront that provides many of these services.

Lake Lure Rutherford

Capturing Broadband in Pictures: The Unseen Beauty of Lake Lure, NC

Lake Lure North Carolina is well-known for its breathtaking scenery, but there’s another layer to its beauty: its burgeoning broadband network.

Local Asheville photographer Marc Czarnecki took a journey to capture this lesser-known side of Lake Lure.

The Concept

This blog aims to showcase the integration of technology within nature.

It’s about how broadband not only connects people digitally but also acts as a lifeline for the local community.

The Technique

Marc uses various shots to capture the invisible signals in the air.

The photos illustrate the broadband waves as light trails juxtaposed against Lake Lure’s natural landscapes.


  • A picture featuring Chimney Rock with an overlay of broadband signals
  • A serene lake shot with data waves rippling across it
  • The Lake Lure Flowering Bridge framed by digital colors thanks to broadband connectivity


These images provide a unique perspective on how broadband is woven into the very fabric of Lake Lure, tourism, and the hospitality industries.

Tourists remind us that technology and nature can coexist in harmony.


Marc’s Lake Lure photo portfolio successfully portrays the unsung hero of Lake Lure: broadband.

Marc’s photography allows us to appreciate not just the natural beauty, but also the technological veins that keep the community pulsing.

Feel free to share this blog post and join the conversation about Lake Lure’s hidden beauty and how broadband helps communicate the economics of tourism.

Web Tech Czar’s 360 Sphere.Biz Photography

by Marc Czarnecki
Digital Nomad Remote Work Work From Home (WFH)

Partner remote workers to our community

A digital nomad is an individual who leverages technology to work remotely and live an independent, location-flexible lifestyle.

These individuals often work in sectors such as tech, marketing, and freelance consulting, among others.

Digital nomads usually move from one location to another, whether within their home country or internationally, while maintaining their work commitments online.

Here are 7 compelling reasons for Asheville area work-from home / remote workers should consider partnering with our Mountain Area Workforce Development Board:

  1. Resource Access: Gain access to valuable workforce development resources, training programs, and job matching services.
  2. Community Engagement: Opportunity to connect with local businesses and government bodies to amplify digital nomad-specific needs.
  3. Skill Enhancement: Benefit from workshops and seminars aimed at upskilling, a valuable proposition for freelancers and remote workers.
  4. Networking: Establish connections with a diverse range of professionals and potential clients in Western North Carolina.
  5. Local Insights: Leverage NCWorks’ extensive local market knowledge to better adapt and serve the Asheville community.
  6. Funding Opportunities: Potential access to grants and financial resources aimed at skill development and community building.
  7. Broadband Expansion: Contribute to initiatives aimed at enhancing high-speed broadband access, a necessity for digital work.

Learn More

  • Email
  • Call 828-575-6968
  • Visit with Marc at the NCWorks Career Center Asheville at 48 Grove Street
Broadband access Remote Work Work From Home (WFH)

Broadband & Work-From-Home Job Opportunities


As remote work continues to dominate the modern job landscape, having a stable and fast internet connection has become more essential than ever. In this blog post, we’ll delve into why broadband is crucial when you’re on the hunt for a work-from-home job and how it can give you a competitive edge.

The Necessity of Broadband

Fast Upload and Download Speeds

  • Work often involves sending large files or running software that demands high bandwidth.
  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) defines broadband internet as a service with download speeds of at least 25 Mbps and upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps. This definition serves as a benchmark for what is considered to be “high-speed” internet.

Video Conferencing

  • Essential for interviews and day-to-day communication. Broadband ensures a smooth, lag-free experience.
  • For basic video conferencing:
    • Download Speed: At least 2-4 Mbps
    • Upload Speed: At least 1-2 Mbps
  • For High Definition (HD) video conferencing:
    • Download Speed: At least 6-10 Mbps
    • Upload Speed: At least 3-5 Mbps
  • For group or multiple HD streams:
    • Download Speed: 10-25 Mbps or higher
    • Upload Speed: 10-25 Mbps or higher
  • Note: These are general recommendations and the actual speeds needed may vary based on the video conferencing platform you’re using and other factors like the number of participants.


  • With broadband, you can juggle multiple tasks at once, such as downloading files while attending a virtual meeting.

The Competitive Edge

Accessibility to More Job Opportunities

  • A good internet connection expands your reach, allowing you to apply to jobs and work for companies based anywhere in the world.
  • For basic multi-tasking (web browsing, word processing, email):
    • Processor: Dual-core CPU
    • RAM: 4GB
    • Storage: 128GB SSD or higher
  • For moderate multi-tasking (streaming, light photo editing, multiple tabs):
    • Processor: Quad-core CPU
    • RAM: 8GB
    • Storage: 256GB SSD or higher
  • For advanced multi-tasking (video editing, 3D rendering, running VMs):
    • Processor: Hexa-core or Octa-core CPU
    • RAM: 16GB or higher
    • Storage: 512GB SSD or 1TB SSD/HDD combo
  • Other Considerations:
    • Graphics Card: Integrated graphics are generally sufficient for basic to moderate tasks. A dedicated GPU is needed for advanced tasks.
    • Operating System: Ensure it’s up-to-date for optimal performance and security.

Increased Productivity

  • With fast speeds, you’re more efficient, making you a more appealing candidate to potential employers.
  • To increase your productivity:
    • Set a Schedule: Consistency aids focus and time management. Stick to a routine that mirrors a traditional workday.
    • Designate a Workspace: A dedicated, clutter-free space helps mentally prepare you for a productive workday.
    • Prioritize Tasks: Use tools like to-do lists or apps to keep track of tasks, starting with the most urgent or challenging.
    • Time Management: Employ techniques like the Pomodoro Technique to manage work in short, focused bursts.
    • Limit Distractions: Use apps to block distracting websites and set your phone to “Do Not Disturb” during work hours.
    • Regular Breaks: Short breaks can actually increase productivity by preventing burnout and maintaining high levels of focus.
    • Use Technology: Leverage productivity apps and tools that help streamline tasks and communication.
    • Stay Connected: Regular check-ins with your team keep everyone aligned on goals and priorities.
    • Self-Care: Physical exercise, adequate sleep, and proper nutrition can greatly impact your work performance.
    • Evaluate and Adapt: Periodically review your productivity levels and adapt your strategies as needed.

Skill Enhancement

  • Broadband enables seamless access to online courses and webinars, helping you acquire new skills and improve your resume.
  • How do you enhance your skills?
    • Online Courses: Websites like Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning offer a wide range of courses in various fields.
    • Community Colleges: Local educational institutions often provide vocational training and courses for skill development.
    • Webinars/Seminars: Industry experts frequently host educational events, available both online and in-person.
    • Coding Bootcamps: Intensive programs that teach programming skills in a short time frame.
    • Libraries: Many offer free access to educational material and sometimes even free courses and workshops.
    • YouTube: A plethora of tutorials on almost any subject, although the quality can vary.
    • Volunteering: Gain hands-on experience and new skills while contributing to a cause.
    • Industry Conferences: A way to network and attend workshops or lectures that can be beneficial for skill enhancement.
    • Internships: Offer practical experience and a chance to learn directly from professionals in the field.
    • Mentorship: Seek guidance from someone who has expertise in the area you’re interested in.

Broadband as an Investment

ROI (Return on Investment)

  • While there may be an initial cost involved in setting up broadband, the returns can be substantial in the form of better job opportunities and career advancement.

Tax Benefits

  • Your broadband cost could be a tax-deductible expense, depending on your work circumstances and local laws.


As the work-from-home trend continues to grow, having a broadband connection has transitioned from being a luxury to a necessity. Investing in a high-speed internet connection can give you the competitive edge you need to secure the work-from-home job of your dreams.

So, if you’re actively seeking a remote job, upgrading to broadband or high speed internet is not just an option—it’s a must.

Broadband access Buncombe Frontier

Buncombe Broadband Expansion

See this link for updates regarding broadband efforts including the Frontier expansion in Buncombe County.

This page includes a number of tabs with information described below.

  • Expansion Information: information regarding the Frontier Expansion in northeast Buncombe.
  • Public Meetings: recording from our recent townhall and information about future meetings, as needed.
  • Documents: townhall presentation and Frontier address list. More documents to be added.
  • Broadband Survey: link to the State’s broadband survey. Everyone should complete this survey. Please share widely.
  • Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP): link to ACP website for program eligibility information and application.
Frontier Broadband Expansion Community Information Session – Zoom YouTube Live Recording

Buncombe County will continue provide updates with the above page.

November 22, 2023 update to this post from Mountain Xpress