Computer re-use charity launches appeal for used PCs

2 Mar 2012

Students in the Goodlife Orphanage in Kenya who are being educated using Irish PC donations

The Camara Education charity has launched an appeal for people to donate a share of the some 250,000 used computers it says people in Ireland throw out each year, so it can refurbish them and send them to disadvantaged schools.

The Irish charity refurbishes PCs, loads them with educational content and then distributes the computers to disadvantaged schools in Ireland, Africa and Jamaica.

Since Camara was set up in 2005, it has shipped more than 30,000 computers to around 1,600 disadvantaged schools. CEO John Fitzsimons said 350,000 students have benefitted from its cause.

He said it was “criminal” that 250,000 computers are being destroyed every year here in Ireland when they could be reused in schools that cannot afford to buy new technology.

“We need Irish businesses and the Irish public to take the lead and insist that all used computers are reused for education,” he said.

When it gets used-PC donations, Camara wipes all data on all machines to US Department of Defense standard. The charity has drop-off centres in Dublin, Belfast and Galway. It also offers a nationwide collection service for larger volumes of PC donations.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic