An afterschool program for at-risk kids in Rio Rancho now has access to a roomful of refurbished computers, thanks to collaboration between the city’s largest employer and a local nonprofit that provides jobs to people with disabilities.
Intel Corp. and Adelante Development Center partnered recently to refurbish 3- and 4-year-old computers that Intel no longer needed, rather than let the laptops become e-waste. They donated the refurbished computers to Boys & Girls Clubs on April 22.
Because security is a high priority for Intel, the company cannot release the hard drives of its old computers. Intel did not have a good way to donate those incomplete computers, so it did a lot of recycling, according to Intel representatives at the event.
Recycling computers usually involves dismantling the devices, and donating or selling reusable parts, without unwanted pieces or equipment ending up in trash cans or landfills, according to local recycling websites.
Last October, Intel and Adelante started working together. Intel did an environmental scan and found everything at Adelante met its standards. The company now sends all of its computers to Adelante for refurbishing.
Adelante works with Microsoft Corp. In exchange for inexpensive access to software licenses, such as the Windows 7 operating system and Microsoft Office, they provide documentation of what happens to each refurbished computer and where it ends up, according to Adelante representatives at the event.
The Boys & Girls Club’s branch at 4600 Sundt Road NE received 10 refurbished computers.
With those computers, kids at the center can participate in an online learning platform known as STRIDE Academy four days a week, said Tim Sheehan, president and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Central New Mexico.
“Every week, we get a printout of how these kids are in their math, science and literacy skills, so we are able to monitor them on a weekly basis,” he said. “Another program we have is a reading program here, to be sure that all of our kids are reading at at least a third-grade level.”
Boys & Girls Clubs promotes Internet security for the kids and the computers through a National Center for Missing and Exploited Children educational program known as NetSmartz, he added.