Source. Refurbish. Distribute. Support. That’s the four-step
approach undertaken by PCs for People, a nonprofit established in 1998 that’s
committed to leveling up digital equity and digital inclusion for kids,
families, individuals and organizations in Colorado and across the nation.
On April 22, PCs for People retrieved 440 computers from
Alpine Bank’s central operations facility in Rifle, Colo. It was an errand that
satisfied the first step, Source, in the organization’s mission to bring
computers, mobile internet and digital literacy to people who need them, but for
whom cost is a barrier.
“Alpine Bank is a great new source for us,” said Alejandro
Dopico, who serves as the director of operations for the organization in
Colorado. “We’re so thankful the bank is able to provide the equipment that is
so needed right now.”
Demand has been significant since the organization began. In
2019 alone, PCs for People distributed 22,633 computers in the U.S. But
recently, as schools were required to close during the COVID-19 pandemic in
accordance with shelter-in-place orders, children and families were tasked with
continuing school curriculums and moving the classroom into their living rooms
and onto their kitchen tables at home.
“Right now it’s more important than ever to support families
and the educational system in our communities,” says Jay Rickstrew, Alpine
Bank’s regional president of the Colorado River Valley. “Though obsolete by
bank operations standards, these computers have a lot of life left in them.”
Each computer will be fully refurbished and presented in
like-new condition to their new owners. Computers are installed with a new
licensed copy of Windows 10, and families are also provided with internet
access, repair and phone support delivered by PCs for People.
Their rigorous process for secure information destruction,
hardware sanitization and refurbishing computers is NAID AAA-Certified. NAID® is
the acronym for National Association for Information Destruction and is the global
standard-setting body advocating for best practices in secure data destruction.
With no risk of sensitive information remaining on the
computer hardware, the process eliminates security concerns for businesses and
organizations that might otherwise send computers to the landfill rather than
repurposing them to a nonprofit computer refurbisher.
With its donation to PCs for People, Alpine Bank joins a
larger initiative of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City in its Employer Laptop Challenge, a community
development program across seven states that encourages businesses and
organizations to donate their used computers to help bridge the digital divide.
“We encourage others to consider a recurring or even one-time gift to meet this important community need,” says Jay. “As we upgrade our technology at Alpine Bank in the future, we’ll continue to partner with PCs for People. It’s a clear win-win.”