Comp-U-Dopt Recognizes John Cooper School’s Community Service

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Like Comp-U-Dopt's corporate donors, students at the Woodlands, Texas school tapped into the existing supply of unused or discarded computers and helped deserving, school-age children who do not have computers at home.

Cooper students Cameron Bradley, Aamer Rakla and Sergio Servat collect computers for donation.

Comp-U-Dopt often provides computers to children at schools, but this is the first time students have collected computers and funds for donation.

In an unprecedented local charitable collaboration, representatives of the technology non-profit Comp-U-Dopt recently accepted a donation of computers and funds from students at The John Cooper School in The Woodlands, Texas.

Advised by Shelley Gougenheim, who chairs the Cooper computer science department, student members of the high school computer club collected computer hardware and peripherals, then erased and re-formatted the computers for Comp-U-Dopt to re-distribute to children in the Houston area.

Comp-U-Dopt board members Jeff Nichols and Erin Powers, whose families reside in The Woodlands, accepted 10 computers and a check for $1,200 at a high school assembly on the Cooper campus.

Powers said, “Comp-U-Dopt often provides computers to children at schools, but this is the first time students have collected computers and funds for donation. Cooper students also volunteered to help distribute computers to children in north Houston. We appreciate the students’ generous contributions of time, talent and treasure. We will encourage other schools to follow Cooper’s lead.”

Founded in 2007, Comp-U-Dopt awards computers to children who submit essays explaining how a computer will benefit their education. Each refurbished computer comes with Linux-based educational tools such as word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, and Internet capabilities. Children who receive computers attend a two-hour “adoption” session with parents or guardians to learn software use and computer care.

An estimated 250 million computers are in use nationally. With an average lifespan of about three years in business settings, only about 18 percent of computers are recycled properly, according to government research. Millions of usable computers are stored in warehouses or end up in landfills.

Nichols added, “The Cooper students tapped into the existing supply of unused or discarded computers and found a way to help school-age children in our area who do not have access to a computer at home. Like our corporate donors, the Cooper students helped foster the educational aspirations in deserving children.”

Corporate, institutional and individual donors can help Comp-U-Dopt in three ways: 1) donations of working PCs and laptops, 2) tax-deductible financial donations which cover the costs of refurbishing and distributing the computers and related educational support, and 3) volunteers – with or without technology expertise. More information is available at http://www.compudopt.org.

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Julissa Chappell
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