Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Can You Help Us Ship PCs to Poor Costa Rican Families?

Update: Ulis, K3LU, put us over the top on this fundraiser! Thank so much Ulis!! The campaign still has 7 days to run, so if you want to add to the pot, it would be very much appreciated. 73!

No, this is not a strictly ham radio related post, but it is kinda electronically geeky, so close enough I hope.

When we moved down to Costa Rica in late 2008, I carted down a lot of older PCs and spare parts. That was partly because some of those already worked and we'd need them and partly because I like tinkering with the old machines (well, PIIs to P4s, not 8086 boxes) and saving what most people would discard.

That side hobby morphed into a very modest program of finding or receiving donations of old PCs here, getting them to work, loading them with Lubuntu and donating them to some of the poorest, local neighbors who otherwise would not have a computer in the home. There are plenty of folks here that get by week to week and have no way to access the Internet and need the help of a PC to keep up with the other kids in school.

Kapipal PC shipping campaign poster
We need $300, minimum contribution is $1
Very recently, I decided to ask for help from my Facebook community to raise funds to defray my out-of-pocket expenses for the many spare parts I need to complete some systems, such as memory, drives, power supplies, etc. That was a roaring success. I raised the $250 I hope for in less than a week.

During that campaign, a fellow who lives in Florida told me he had 20 Core2Duo Dell desktops in working order that he had wanted to ship to Guatemala. He found the red tape too much to overcome, however, so he offered them to me if I'd pay for the shipping to Costa Rica.

I immediately contacted a shipper I know well and he agreed to waive his agency fee and give me the highest volume (lowest rate) price for this modest load. All together it comes to just $15 per PC or $300 total.

Thus, without giving folks a breather from the last campaign, I am again asking (on Kapipal) for donations to offset the shipping costs. I'll be giving the machines a thorough checkout, loading them with Lubuntu and plenty of apps and finding them homes. I qualify the recipients through trusted Tico friends, so I know they are going to families who will use them and I'll be inquiring about the need for these at local schools and libraries as well.

Long story short, can you help? Even a $1 donation helps, believe me.

Here is the link to the Kapipal campaign: http://www.kapipal.com/5d29e5ebabec4c8db18db0ffa7c1c449

I would very much appreciate it if you could share this news with your own networks.

Tnx es Vy 73!  - Casey

P.S. For a $15 or higher contribution, I'll stamp your call sign into the case of one of the new machines, hihi! :)

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Thanks very much for your comment! 73, Casey

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