Partnership between London Drugs and CFS reboots online learning program

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Partnership between London Drugs and CFS reboots online learning program
WATCH: For years London Drugs has taken in old computers and sent them off to be recycled, but after partnering with Computers for Schools, the two groups are looking to students learning from home this fall – Aug 20, 2020

Just a few weeks in, things are looking promising for Computers For Kids, a program that collects then refurbishes computers before distributing them to schools and families in need.

The team at Computers For Schools (CFS) recently partnered with London Drugs to accept all donated laptops and computers that the stores in Saskatoon and Regina take in leading up until Sept. 30.

The relationship was an easy one to get off of the ground as, for years, London Drugs has been receiving old tech gear and simply having it recycled. They are now happy that the units will have the opportunity to end up in the hands of students in need.

“There are a lot more people (who need) to have computers, and laptops,” London Drugs store manager Robert Mather said in Saskatoon.

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“Being that we are a major computer department and that we’re part of the community, I mean, it’s integral that we do something good and help out.”

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CFS, which has been serving Saskatchewan for over 25 years at their two hubs in Saskatoon and Regina are excited to receive these additional units from London Drugs.

The work, performed by a predominantly volunteer staff, gives hard drives an additional memory wipe before reconditioning the units to be used by students throughout the province.

“In the life cycle of a year, we’ll send out about 4,500 to 5,000 computers,” CFS executive director Keith Grill said.

As the request number is constantly growing, especially for laptops, this newly formed partnership should greatly benefit the needs of CFS with the allure to online learning surging during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“We typically see, probably, three or four computers a week (per store), and we’ve probably seen it double so far,” Mather said.

“But, it’s just getting started, and our big fall flyer, for back to school should drive a lot of customers to us. We have a lot of techs here to deal with data privacy, and hope to see as many as possible.”

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“We’re getting a lot of requests because people are making the decision not to send their kids back to the schools, and to keep them home as much as possible,” Grill added.

“So, the demand is ramping up, and once Sept. 8th hits, it’s going to get even crazier.”

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