Do you have a computer, laptop, tablet or phone you don’t need?
Below are some of the projects you can pass them onto to help school children.
And if it’s too far gone and needs recycling – click here for some tips from Which
Before you start
Some suggestions/guidelines to help the project/school (and do email me with any other suggestions):
- Keep it local: Avoid travelling any distances. Try to find somewhere local – contact your nearest local schools first.
- Use email rather than phone: Schools will probably find it easier to handle emails.
- Provide as much information: this again should make it easier for the schools to decide if your donation will be useful or not
- Name of computer: e.g. Mac, Asus, Dell
- Approximate age if known
- Any known faults or limitations
- Does it have a built in camera
- Delete all confidential information: Leaving confidential or personal information or login details/passwords on your device leaves you open to the risk of identity theft or similar. Most of the schemes below will completely clean/wipe the machines before sending them out. But check they do this.Note that simply ‘deleting’ some files or folder is not enough – see the section below on deleting information.
Computers for Schools
Some charities can collect, wipe and share the laptops all in one; some can help take your devices off your hands to fix them ready for distribution; some are collecting donations to help fund devices for pupils; some are local to specific areas and some are nation-wide, both across England and the UK.
And you can always Google for more projects – e.g. donate computer to schools UK
Business To Schools Initiative (www.business2schools.com/schools)
Not just for businesses. This lists schools in (roughly) county order and then school name order. Find your closest school and send them an email with what you have.
Vodafone – The Great British Tech Appeal (www.vodafone.co.uk/techappeal)
Got a phone or a tablet? – register on the site – put the device in the envelope and send it to us – we’ll wipe all data, restore factory settings, then send it to its new home.
Donate your old phones and tablets to The Great British Tech Appeal and we’ll gift them to young people, supported by Barnardo’s, with 6 months free unlimited data.
Restart Project (therestartproject.org/where-to-donate-your-computer)
Lists some of the UK computer reuse projects that accept individual donations, for reuse in the local community.
A Plymouth based, community based, not for profit organisation reusing and recycling white goods, computers, laptops and unwanted electrical items. They donate computers to school children.
Plymouth based project (geo.borrowdontbuy.co.uk)
We take donations of older technology and refurbish and repair them. We box them up, (better than new) and then working with partners all across Plymouth, we give them away to people who need them. We also accept money donations.
Charities accepting cash donations
Computers for Charities
Deleting your information
Leaving confidential or personal information or login details/passwords on your device leaves you open to the risk of identity theft or similar.
You have four options:
- The scheme or project may offer to clean your device for you.
- Get a professional IT person/company to do this (it may cost you a little, but think of this as a donation to the children who’ll benefit from it).
- Remove any disks (and destroy them) before passing on the device.
- Clean your device yourself. The safest way is to clean your entire disk(s). However, this is not straightforward and can be quite technical.
While it is possible to do it yourself, we cannot and do not recommend it. This is purely because, if we did, and you didn’t do it properly, and there was identity theft we could be held responsible.
If you do feel confident about trying it yourself then look on the internet for sites that might help you.
For example, here is one from Which – how to factory reset a computer and there is a fairly straightforward process to do this with Windows 10.
What really happens when you ‘delete’ files
What really happens when you “delete” something (like a file or a picture or an email). There are basically four levels or ways you can do this …
|LEVEL||When you ...||This is what happens ...||Which means ...||It can be recovered by ...|
|1||Click on 'Delete' or drag it to the 'bin'||In many cases this simply moves it into a temporary folder called the "Bin" or "Recycle Bin" or "Trash" etc.||It still exists and is really easy to recover.||Anyone|
|2||Delete it 'permanently' (or delete it from the recycle bin or empty the recycle bin).||Even then, it may simply get 'marked' as deleted.||You can't see or find it anymore ... BUT it's still not actually deleted! Anything 'marked' as deleted remains until the place it is stored is needed by something else and so gets overwritten.||Most tech people|
|3||Use a program to "properly erase" it.||It gets deleted and the place it was stored gets written over a number of times.||It's been deleted and is virtually impossible to recover.||High level tech people|
|4||Smash the device that contains it with a sledgehammer or similar||It's gone||Totally gone||No one|