Campaign offers computing to Nunavut’s needy
Rebuilt computers find new homes
An Iqaluit non-profit group has come up with a novel way to keep surplus computers out of the landfill site by putting them into the hands of needy people.
Eight years ago, David Fulgham became tired of seeing used computers thrown away when businesses upgraded their equipment.
That spurred Fulgham — a member of the non-profit Advanced Technology Group, a Iqaluit-based group dedicated to the advancement of technology and internet access for everyone in Nunavut — to act.
Knowing that many homes in Nunavut have no computers, Fulgham saw an opportunity to help people and protect the environment at the same time.
And so, the “Computers for Christmas” campaign was born.
Backed by team of volunteers, Fulgham now refurbishes donated computers he receives throughout the year so that the machines will be ready for Christmas.
“We set up an assembly line,” Fulgham said. “ And it takes about an hour to rebuild an average computer.”
For volunteer Rowan Novinger, it’s a way for him to put years of acquired knowledge when he “would basically break my computer and try to fix it” to good use.
This year, Advanced Technology Group will give away 10 computers, each with an LCD monitor, mouse and keyboard.
The computers will come loaded with Windows XP, virus protection and an Inuktitut font, allowing recipients to plug in and power up right away.
Online nominations from communities help determine who gets a computer. Each nomination is supposed to contain a short essay describing the worthiness of the nominee.
The members of ATG then review the submissions and choose the most deserving nominees.
“The nominations that provide the most detail as to the need of the nominee have the best chance of being chosen,” Fulgham said.
This year, for the first time, nominations are open to people in all Nunavut communities.
That’s because First Air has offered to ship the computers free of charge to people living outside of Iqaluit.
If you know of a person, family or group of people who deserve a computer and may not have the means to obtain one for themselves or their family, you can nominate them here or send an email to email@example.com.