Working closely with clients and associates to secure hand-me-down computers, Fully Managed refurbished and delivered them to thankful families halfway across the world in Kilimanjaro.
“I received a request from a friend returning from Africa asking if she could purchase a used laptop from us to send to her African guide Nickson. She said Nickson’s needs were limited and only required Internet,” explained Sharleen Oborowsky, President of Fully Managed. “From there, the idea was born to make use of all our client’s obsolete laptops by sending them to Africa. I felt that this was an easy request and not the typical request for money donations which continues to get more challenging as more charities are formed.”
Read more about Nickson & his family here.
The impact was immediate, with letters and photos from recipients coming in to the office. The difference that these computers made was widespread, bringing technology into schools, community organizations and households.
“The second shipment was hand delivered by a friend. It was a special request and this particular laptop traveled to many places prior to landing on Nickson’s lap,” noted Oborowsky. “I knew I needed to find another way to get our laptops to Africa!”
Inspired to expand the program this fall, Fully Managed is now reaching out to the Gastown community for old, but still functional laptops.
This year, the company has partnered with two inspiring individuals from Uganda, Silas & Christine, and their organization, the Bavukbuka Foundation. The pair work closely with young African entrepreneurs in the country and are hoping to provide them with tools that will empower them to realize their dreams. Fully Managed would like to send 50 refurbished laptops for use in this amazing program – and they’ll need the neighbourhood’s help to do it.
“We found Silas and Christine through another one of our team mates, David Reeve. He has been providing mentorship on his own time and learned that their organization is in need of resources, such as laptops,” said Oborowsky. “This was the connection that I needed. Someone to receive them and put them to use.”
Individuals or companies with old laptops that they’re looking to discard can call 1-888-897-4382 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The minimum specs required for each donated machine include a hard drive, power supply and basic functionality. Laptops can be dropped off to the company’s Gastown office at #220 – 12 Water Street, or the Fully Managed team can make arrangements to pick them up.
Fully Managed delivers IT support, strategy, proactive management, consulting, cloud and voice services to businesses and non-profit organizations across Canada. In February of 2014, the company was named Small Business BC’s Best Employer in 2014. Visit their web site for more information on the company and the Laptops for Africa initiative.