PCs for People is a national nonprofit organization working to help solve the digital divide through affordable hardware access, e-waste recycling, and digital literacy training. Founded in 1998 by a social worker who wanted to provide affordable technology to every family regardless of socioeconomic status, PCs for People has served more than 825,000 people across all 50 US states and Puerto Rico, nearly half of whom have previously never owned a computer.
PCs for People’s unique approach contributes to environmental sustainability by recycling usable computers before they reach landfills, refurbishing them for reuse. “Our social enterprise model enables us to expand our nonprofit services quickly and maximize our impact nationwide,” said Bryan Mauk, Chief Innovation Officer of PCs for People.
Businesses typically retire computers long before their usable life is over. This contributes to America being the largest producer of electronic waste in the world. PCs for People offers businesses a certified, no-cost, secure electronic recycling service. The organization’s environmental certifications ensure that all electronic waste that cannot be reused is recycled sustainably with zero landfill impact.
This work is made possible through partnerships with businesses of all sizes across the US. In February 2023, for example, the organization announced a new partnership with Melissa & Doug, the #1 preschool brand for wooden and sustainable toys, to recycle retired technology from the company’s Wilton, Connecticut headquarters and other North American facilities. As part of Melissa & Doug’s commitment to sustainability, any technology devices fit for refurbishment will be restored to the highest quality and provided at no- or low-cost to families.
“Instead of these computers ending up scrapped, they will be wiped, refurbished, and given a second life in the homes of families who need them,” said Joseph Benson, VP of Business Development at PCs for People. “We believe that everyone deserves to have the digital tools, connection, and skills they need to succeed. Companies who recycle their devices with PCs for People power our mission and help to support digital inclusion and the planet.”