Department of Corrections and Corrections Foundation Launches “Computers for Kids”

Inmates at two Florida prisons will be refurbishing donated computers to be given to non profit organizations that serve children, including schools, religious organizations and community programs. The “Computers for Kids” program is the Department’s latest re-entry program, designed to provide meaningful job training to inmates to better prepare them for employment upon release, and refurbished, fully-functioning computers to non-profit, child-centered organizations. The recipient organizations must have 501(c)3 status.

“This is one of those win-win situations,” said Secretary Buss. “The kids get a free computer that may have otherwise ended up in a landfill, while inmates learn a useful trade that will provide them employment opportunities upon release.”

The Florida Department of Corrections has partnered with the non profit Corrections Foundation to start the program at Sumter Correctional Institution in Bushnell and Cross City Correctional Institution in Dixie County. Inmates will be trained by the Bureau of Re-Entry Programs and Education instructors.

The computers that will be accepted for donation must meet certain standards – Pentium 4 with a minimum 512 MB of memory; Macs –Performa, Centris, Power Mac, or G3 and up, servers with dual-core Xeon processors with a minimum 2 GB of memory and a CD/DVD drive. Laser printers will also be accepted. Peripherals in working condition will be accepted: color monitors, keyboards, mice, power and monitor cables, and CD/DVD drives, network cards, Pentium motherboards, RAM SIMMS, 120+ GB hard drives.

Anyone  interested in making or receiving donations may contact the Corrections Foundation at 850-717-3712.  The Corrections Foundation will be responsible for reviewing and awarding computers to organizations that request them.

Currently, Florida inmates do not have access to computers, unless as part of a vocational program, nor do they have internet access. A similar program was run by the Department from 1999-2006, during which 7,000 computers were distributed to child-centered organizations.

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