Indians who live on the Sauk-Suiattle reservation in the Cascade mountains now have Wi-Fi covering the reservation: Twenty computers have been donated for residents. The project was initiated by the Economic Development Corp. of the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians. The same group also built a portal and planned to bring broadband access to the Makah Indians using Wi-Fi.
In this case, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Verizon Avenue took part in building the network and donating computers. The Economic Development Corp. sponsored computer training for residents.
I wrote a story about the Makah network and found that the idea here isn't to just deliver Internet access but to open doors for the reservation residents. Residents can take online educational courses and possibly work remotely for companies. One reservation in Eastern Washington built a sophisticated telephony network on the reservation in hopes of attracting some company to build a call center there as a way to create jobs. Otherwise, most residents must leave the reservation to find work.
Eventually, the Economic Development Corp. plans to bring Internet access to reservations throughout the northwest and link all the networks together as a way to share ideas among reservation residents and build a broader community.