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Computer Donations: Getting Free Technology for Your Organization

Keep in mind a fair amount of freebies are worth exactly that -- zero. Or worse, it could end up negative if you invest a lot of your valuable time configuring an antique computer or learning out-of-date software. Try to be selective and pick items that are upgradeable. Don't forget auctions sites such as EBay as well-- it may be well worth paying a small amount for used but useful old Pentium PC than a free but only marginally functional 486.

If you are looking for inkind donations (or want to donate to a nonprofit) check out these sites:

* Inkindex A B2B exchange to facilitate the transfer of corporate donations to the right nonprofit organizations

* Share the Technology allows the user to post a request or donation online. They try to limit donations to 486 /040Mac computers or better.

* Gifts in Kind Processes many types of product donations, mostly from corporations. They also process software donation requests on the behalf of companies such as Microsoft, Adobe, Lotus etc. There is a $125-250 fee (depending on the size of your budget) for this service.

Corporate Donations:

Adobe Systems gives out their products (graphic design software such as Photoshop, Pagemaker) ) to qualifying nonprofits.

Compaq donates computers and technology to nonprofit organizations - read their online application criteria carefully.

Intel gives out hardware donations

Microsoft Microsoft provides software donations

Other in-kind sites:

Another Byte

FreeBytes (GA)

National Cristina Foundation Matches computer donors with 501 c 3 organizations who need equipment.

Non-Profit Computing (NY)

PEP National Directory of Computer Recycling Programs listing of programs for schools and community groups

White House Computer Donation Program Computers for Learning

The Surplus Exchange (Kansas City, MO)

TecsChange (Boston, MA)

Auction Sites:

Yahoo! Yahoo doesn't seem to give away grants, but they do provide inkind support to nonprofits in the form of online media sponsorship. Given their reach, this is very good exposure online for an organization.

Also look at cheap auction sites such as the following (but remember, buyer beware- none of these sites have been vetted, but some should look familiar to you):

ShopGoodwill.com has a computer category as well as many other miscellaneous items

Used Computer Mall

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All contents on this page ©Websprouts --updated 2/12/01

any comments or suggestions? email me at achu@mba1999.hbs.edu