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Schools and colleges asked to donate their unwanted PCs

To provide resources to schoolchildren in developing countries

UK schools, colleges and universities are being urged to donate their used computer equipment in a summer appeal by Computer Aid International.

Donating unwanted IT equipment to the charity will mean that equipment will be used to provide greater access to education and ICT for schoolchildren in developing countries.

Since 1998 the charity has been working to reduce poverty through practical ICT solutions, largely through the provision of over 200,000 computers and laptops for use in education, agriculture and health in over 100 countries.

Schools, colleges and universities in the UK are said to have already made a significant contribution to Computer Aid through donations of computers, monitors and laptops. Current education sector donors include Oxford University, University College London, Westminster University, Brunel University, Royal Holloway University, Bournemouth University and hundreds of schools and FE colleges across the UK.

Royal Holloway University has been donating its IT equipment to Computer Aid since 2003.

John Gregory, senior desktop support analyst at the university, said: "We use Computer Aid for our IT disposal because they are reliable, their drivers turn up on time, they provide secure data wiping on all equipment, and they are a well-established organisation who have been working in the field of computer refurbishment for many years. The fact that the equipment goes on to a good cause is a bonus too."

Anja ffrench, director of communications at Computer Aid, said: "In an increasingly global economy it is critical that children and students in Africa and Latin America are IT literate.

"By donating computers and monitors to Computer Aid organisations can make a significant contribution to poverty reduction by helping children learn valuable IT skills which are essential to their country's development."

Each PC, monitor and laptop donated to Computer Aid is asset tracked enabling the charity to provide feedback to every donor on exactly which school, university or project their unwanted PCs are benefiting.

Earlier this year Computer Aid expressed "disappointment" at the lack of emphasis on the reuse of technology in an updated version of the European Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) directive. The new directive did not include a reuse target, a "significant opportunity that was missed", said Computer Aid.

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