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Free Geek 121116

Dec 6, 2016|

AN INTERVIEW WITH COLLEEN DIXON, DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT FOR THE NON-PROFIT FREE GEEK AND CODY HAMBLIN FROM CENTURY LINK ABOUT THE WORK THEY DO GETTING TECHNOLOGY INTO THE HANDS OF PEOPLE WHO NEED IT AND ABOUT THEIR RECYCLING PROGRAM.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

This is meant to scope and Entercom radio Portland public affairs program under a block some. Have you ever wondered where old computers go or maybe you have an old computer that you like to get rid of for you need to listen to Michelle. I like talking to the show this time Coleen Dixon she's the director of development and public services for free geek and also could be handling area sales manager for since relinquish the show. The depravity and took early let's get started we view what is free geek Caffrey teak sub prime amaze some process. And we take use technology. That where than you know just signing can we re used as a free Camry is really make sure that it's ethically recycled and if we can only tickets to the hands of people who mean. Well what a cool thing he had telling we've been on this we started in 2000 since then. Sixteen years almost seventeen years my home in technology's changed just a little bit over that element. It's a so how does somebody get their hands on the equipment that you have available he has so we have a few different ways that we get equipment out to the community. One is I'm in exchange for her volunteerism and community service is so I mean volunteer that comes and works with us and our process gets a computer after 24 hours of time. And then we also provide computers through for K through twelve students hurt when he Trout Tony for hours and volunteers and anywhere in the community. And then only have a harder grants program where we give computers out to other nonprofits and community organizations. Number Serena 24 hours this cumulative it's not you don't have to doodle yeah. Telling a lot gains honey are you finished you know you can do it down over and means any matter tank okay to put in a couple hours here a couple of hours later. And families can also a pooled our hours for computer. Who can volunteer work can would people be doing glued to question. We have a lot of different roles so. In that kind of recycling world of our work it's taking items apart for recycling a lot of electronics recyclers will shred things and then magnet tantamount. We actually disassembled them to make sure yellow plastic someone please tell the steals and another place and make sure they're going to. Recyclers that are using environmental practices that are unethical things aren't getting shipped overseas or. And to any sort of problematic venues. Salute your publicist or stay clean up warrior hoboes with rebuilding the computers and you don't have to have any experience with we can't start by teaching a workshop on the anatomy of a computer what's inside what does what it's and then from there you can. Start taking him on par with the team back together. While so it's an educational process as well he had definitely and a lot of took fare better building job skills technical skulls. Well what's so what's great is your keeping so much of that. Yucky stuff out of the environment great causes that I mean how often do we change computers from every couple years right yeah Lisa cell phone Iran's oil. Yeah definitely the environmental aspect of the mission has seen her important and relieved really impact fall. Leo we have all sorts of things that he and we take also beyond computers. You know stereo equipment T. v.s VCRs. Video game systems things like that. Yeah do you think about all of metals and resource is that going to making electronics it's not thinking you're just wanna throw in the trash. One because there's toxic things and it. Though we don't want to reach out to the amendment or the other aspect is that there's valuable things and at that we can recover you know we can recover gold and silver from electronics. I missed much lesser impact and mining and minerals from the earth. Sun has a very large impact and a large following you only taken about. 90000. Pounds of material month Sony here it's about one point 25 million pounds of electronics that are collectible just important and allowed them. My goodness that's a lot yeah there's a lot of. So let's introduce once again going Hamlin. Pardon me Cody Campbell hit areas sales manager for centrally allison's really involved with freaky. Centrally involved in the freak in a number of ways I think right now the primary way is we partner with free geek and they're giving campaign that they're running right now called give gather believer gad get I can't remember which you have to get your dad okay you don't do it okay dilemma we give them minding got bigger and jumbled up a little bit better we're matching up to the first fight doesn't over the donations and donations. Dollar for dollar to 5000 dollar century links contributing to that you know most people. In Portland market. Should recognizes they'd already as a high speed Internet service provider rice that we invest a lot in this market we bring. Internet connectivity to the silicon forest. And it's just a natural partnership that we have with free geek because there. I'm providing devices to folks access to the Internet to use it to imagine all of its possibilities to realize that and and so. We just go hand in hand you know like a vote. Floats in water in the you know. The Internet is only as good as devices that you run on it so it just it just works so naturally between the toothless and pretty impossible to Texas he met without. The device this absolutely. So. This is a match made it happen. Yes sir no that's how we feel about it you know I think they're easy to partner win I think you know. In terms of was sent reeling does in this market. It's not just one customer that we're going after you know there's some foundational core kind of core values this entry link is built some in calmer unifying principles and one of those. And it is respect and respect really speaks of the compassion that we should have for every individual you know everybody deserves our attention they deserve that we listen to them day. They deserve our compassion and not everybody has equal access to Internet connectivity or the devices that can neck and run on the Internet. So we love you know in the same way that we have different speeds to meet different consumers' needs. And we have speeds and offers to meet those that may have limited reached you know income restriction answer receives assistance from different government agencies. In in the same way if freak who works to get technology in the hands of maybe the lesser fortunate are those that have lacked the opportunity. So we want those same customers using our networks. How can no customers get access how they humbly reach out to you and and maybe get the discount. Well you know another thing that I think makes our partnership with century with free geek. So great heck is that you know there the traditional means that customers can you seem to get to century immigrant they can go to the the where they can call the 800 number. I prefer in what I represent is being the local face a century link in this community. Finger or retail stores and they can talk to folks who. Are well aware of the rules and the application process who can navigate an answer all the questions that a customer might happen they can sign up Fred. One in Portland right now we're gonna have another one in Portland here and another couple months. I would go on in Vancouver we've got one down in Salem there's always somebody local clothes that our customers can come to and learn more about our services and gets kinda a trickle. So clean them since really gives it is ready to donate for maps the fires five K right so how does how do you get to the fight case. Yeah that's Andrea cheek so yeah our part of a year and giving campaign through Emily called the gift guide. And they give guide is a way to get it. Part lenders to really focus on charitable giving at the end of the year. So in that come our goal our history is 151000. Dollars by a event of the year. And how that match face and trailing can also another foundation and so there's a let's say called give guide dot org that you can go to two domain and also there's physical actual give the guy aids I am. Paper published two guys that are around town. Through OM a week yes so that's the most lead to donate. We have a pretty high volume in our facility were located in southeast or plans inner SE on ten to market just a CU blocks south of popcorn. And we have between volunteers. And here through shops so people coming in the shop that F 3-D people coming into Tony. Begin a few hundred people through the door day. And so there Reno where mining everybody to support our efforts in the hearings getting them are getting pretty close term goal mouth will need as much help was leaking debt and again you know without matchup makes that so valuable is for anyone who don't mean it's your prima it's doubling the impact of your contribution and so when you get a dollars and feeling gets dollar so. B a two dollar and that's also. So that the thrift store when people come in inducing shopping and I only hear about thrift store and when people coming into shopping does that money also goes tomb. Helping yourself. It does yeah a year round about eighty 78080% of our income comes from thrift store sales. So we have a third store and more selling older kind of collectible vintage seeing as I'm. And regular stock reusable things parts for people who are building computers. And also just offering affordable technology to the communities he wouldn't come entrants are stored get a computer for your family for under hundred dollars with. Keyboard monitor malice. Everything Mimi and and everything also is coming with. I'm tech support in a warranties so we ensure that you're gonna keep using and we us upright free classes on commits additional literacy aspects of using a computer. I'll also tell me more about the class is I would imagine somebody who maybe doesn't have. The exposure to technology that but they need a computer hook so yeah go through that. I think this ties into you know I could he was saying is that Clinton releasing and that is all I could be or digital inclusion. We think Jimenez coming three components Sony need access to device. And then you need access to the Internet right actual service to run the device and then meaning training so these three components together meek actual digital. Inclusion work happened. And without one of those components you don't have a full picture of what it means to be a participate in digital culture. So we've president of nice peace and clean do you offer some of the training pieces so when menuing get to computer from last restart with the getting started class which is about a two to three. Setting it up. Basic privacy insecure media blog ends passwords. Web browsers things like dot and then from there we have a different. Different kind of specialty classes some that focus on. Specifically am proud of the scene and safety summit focus on social media. Different aspects of adult it's illiteracy. Could could you let me ask you what are some problems that people may have when they don't have access to these. Well more more of our lives I think every day are becoming more more digital pray we it is that is the experience of our lives of there. If they're unable to access. A reliable Internet connection a fastener connection to secure Internet connection. Then they're going to be very limited in what they can do data de if they're searching for a job there and how many jobs out there are not many employers out there that are really do and face to face paper applications anymore most of the time. When UN or place of employment you want and you and your seeking. A job they're gonna tell you go on line rate you're gonna hear that a lot go online go online go online if you go to the doctor there they're consolidating more and more. Your medical records digitally and everything we do. Almost everything we do is is is going digital you know I often have been joke with people may ask us. And how important is the Internet your daily life and Michael how important is the blood the closer your veins he simply can't function you can't live without it so. Making sure that I'm not only for make access available to every. Socioeconomic. Class regardless of the status of that of that customer. And the more access they have to quality equipment and discount impresses the better their life experiences and either going to be our mailed to participate. With with the rest of us in the twice for sentry that net take for granted almost that are already on the the Internet daily when we go to sleep and when you wake up in the morning and every second in between. Yeah I was gonna say that that's that's that's something we probably all take for granted that we have access to the Internet and every point right here in my recording studio and Obama and mobile phone it's everywhere ago. And that's not the case reference notes. The one thing that might be happening because it is the holiday season somebody might be giving some new technology. Has a gift. Or or going out and doing those Black Friday deals and getting some new technology. Should they recycle their old technology with free geek. Absolute. I thinks. Mean there are yes the app we are I think quietly not only Nam kotsay collections IE in there's other private companies that we'll take your things the most leave her feet. The app. We're open Tuesday through Saturday ten to six in any time during that time you're welcome to come governor facility you can drop anything off with comments on tax deductible. Your physical thing donation has loans any sort of cash contribution. What sort of equipment do you take. Now we did all sorts of things anything that's pretty much plugs and to move the wall. And while gap so and mean or into a computer. And we computer's. Speakers. Headphones. Any sort of AV equipment and stereo components. On video games. Small household appliances. Things like have. Under week there's only it's easier to see what we don't take this is a few things which are air conditioners. Smoke detectors. Microwaves. And then any sort of like a large things like we can't take a dishwasher or refrigerator or a large copy machine loyalty to printers. Clocks watch is. Tablets. We certainly mobile I'm Lindsay our old phones apple iPods anything like what about like cables and accessories and dad cables and cords definitely. Also I will say this because it's such a lifesaver. The third story is a great place to get a cable or record casino if you go to violate any HDMI cord at. At a box sore smear and a paid 3040 dollars you get an entry geek for a couple whacks him around and just. I think that also economy every use is so important because this recognizing that. I don't seem anyone from buying new things this. The English speaking of Black Friday deals there's a nasty stuff in the world for every one and played right we have enough cord thing cabling computers and it's just how do we resource thing did against the range eons. They have we never made any thing again we'd probably be okay. Thought we are doing new things and the on racially ethnically dispose of your old things and hopefully he you know the first. The first choice would be free us. Yeah I if they think that's a radio because that's how often do you leave home and forget your cable. To charge your phone or something we can you come to freaky can just. My one right there yes you pay gap so we can you also explain to us service and drilling foundation has so many things going on and one of them is the teachers and technology campaign tells about the. It's we are committed to you. You know aimed. By anywhere community connecting our customers to the digital world we believe it's empowering its enriching of their lives. And that's even more more relevant today in terms you know. The weighted occasional system set up for younger kids middle school kids high school kids even an ecology I think we take. We doctor metaphor parity for gratis as young adults and and maturing in dolls getting in the middle a genuine and more that the Internet is a part of what we views or her last. But I think we have to forget that it's really a part of our kids' lives to now parents instead of calling. Our teachers instead of calling the parents are saying go online to the portal and check your kids' grades or look at the notes and stuff like that so one of those things. This enjoying does through the Clark Jim Williams foundation it's our own foundation. Is we award millions of dollars and technology grants to educators to full time teachers who submit applications online. And what they're doing is is it's is there asking for funds that support. Innovative uses of technology in the classroom. I mean I can't tell you I think there was. Fourteen store fourteen schools rather. In the state of war again that we're awarded to scratch up to 5000 dollars for a school year any cover things like interactive white boards. Upgrades to their projection systems so that you know when he gets the visual arts and visual teaching aides say can. Teachers can bring the students in and into those experiences and really enrich the teaching opportunities. But one of the coolest ones that we would that we saw this year is that at a school in Portland call Wheatley school. It's where. This and the school has a population of students that maybe didn't do as well behavioral leak ended the general public school populations they may have some different kind kinds of learning disabilities or. Cognitive impairments. And this one teacher who's really passionate about about reaching her since I know many of Omar but she had this this. Robot named Milo to help teach her autistic students how to communicate better. How to. NN NN larger setting in it was amazing to see that those funds directly go into. Initiatives like that where you would think how does a C complained education but you get these little humanoid robots. Teaching kids how to you. Grow and learn and behavior. Win otherwise traditional methods have failed so what I love about what we do through the central link foundation. It is time we enable possibilities we. Award money to those teachers who wanna think outside the box and integrate modern technology whiz maybe traditional teaching methods. And come out with ways that really helps students embrace. Life in the 21 century and beyond. And for teachers whom I may not have access to that exactly that's the end fantastic how does an organ teacher apply legal online censuring dot com. Slash. Teachers and technology. I tried the and symbol but it can't spell it out teachers and technology. And there's rules on there there's the application deadlines. I'm but I would I would encourage our full time teachers that are interest and that to go online because central link is ready to award you. Four. Those applications that you submit that are really geared towards innovative technology used in the classroom it's assume that you awarded siege is over six million dollars in grants are just there we have. That's a significant amount of money significant. And it covers you know across. The century link footprint and there are some guidelines as as to how that how that works but it's really wide open mean. As I mentioned before that what you can use that money for. Is and that's because our our technology is so. Sophisticated and it's so varied and then I'm basically if it's an idea in your mind put to paper and let us help you get there. It's great slow talks more about the free geeks entry link connection. What's going on what would what you want us to do you believed to have. Why I don't 92 Leno distant. Relationships students in classrooms that. We have a program culprit in the partly and that also is a great way for teachers to make sure that their students have access to technology at home. So kind of plays into and out as well you know having access the technology in the classroom is super important and then how do you carry that over winning at home and continue about work. Especially when homework is assigned. Electronically frequent clean students have in my dresses that they are expected to attack. And so through that program students can get computers for Tony for hours of community service anywhere in the community and have had. A lot of amazing classes where teachers have blood the whole class and doing safety patrol or lunch duty for the year and they all logged hours together in on the whole class comes Manning gets their computers and that's a great yeah yeah I am and I think that piece that makes it feel of mining expert talking rain and I community EPs that accessed piece that you're giving something back and they are building a stronger. Connection of community and resources and I think that's part of you know what we're doing with century link is just making sure people know what resources are there. And how they fit together and so their you know there's a safety net that's eleven to gather there's good referrals between businesses between schools between nonprofits and make sure people are connected to the resources they need to be successful. It's free geek getting into the classroom at all. Students can cause all we know a lot of the off site work and were pretty much grounded wherever and so when we do you those dispersants to classes and learning where computers. The will kind of come and to our physical location to pick them up and learn so we don't tell a lot of traveling that we had talked a little bit about. India we like a mobile lab where. A mobile. Track we did we traveled to pick things up. We do make a donation yeah let's do things his own timetable and that's why it's sitting in the garage is who you can't you prove it. Well archer we have a huge track and it mostly just to pick up large volume things from businesses and corporations so. BT click on a city of Portland's equipment tell mama my caddies equipment large businesses so. He usually only go that printing that are you know fifty earmarks systems. Tear on your round for your basic. It could all right and remind myself. And left foot so if somebody wants to come and volunteer and team manager of what free because offer totally do that. Yeah yeah or how is he from our people to help us carry out our mission and we have volunteer orientation sausages service public. Jurors of the facility if you're curious every day at 11 AM and 4 PM. So we're open Tuesdays through Saturday. And even come in and eleven are for each day any take about a twenty to thirty minute orientation to where we explain all the different tasks and you can sign up from there. And all are recycling that it is are doing is so fantastic tennis to Portland thing to do. And it's true true it's true I think you know now it's kind of the initial idea of freaky clothes found it on Earth Day. In 2000 so I think it really how bad environmental piece in my reigns without without president. Yeah I really important aspect of the work. Nineteen to one thing that I always find really good about our mission is and it's kind of cleaning to problems back in each other to solve the solve the problem rain which is that. You know as wasting you don't know what to do it and many homeless people without technology event need access to the fact that you can kind of cancel out those two problems is. And credible you know. That's an awesome thing until the last minute we have here let's talk again about how free geek is gonna get this extra bonus 5000 dollars from interlink. Yeah yeah. Yes are accepting donations I'm until midnight on December 31 through give guide so it's again guide dot ORG. Gone there and Tony there's for geeks out there along with a bunch of other means in Harlan nonprofits. I mean there's incentives to when you give ten dollars or more you get kind of a little prize pack from two netbook. Could you what does it mean for you and since really to be such involved to have such a moment with free geek. What it means for me you know we talk a lot about you know how important is see you connect. Pour lenders to the digital world but. But not at the expense of losing the human aspect of credit where huge company I mean we're recognize communications and and that technology leader. Not just in the country but internationally we're always growing. But what I love about what we do here in Portland is it's very local like we are face to the name and people can come talk to us we live here we work here we play here. And and I really loved partnering west especially in this region I'm not from here I'm from Arizona and and and in Arizona so it's a lot more. While more cookie cutter a lot more now superficial and so and I say that lovingly amuse my home but it's different here people. They take a lot of ownership and living here and working here. And the growth here he ray and and now what I love about that is they wanna do business locally and so. By partnering with free geek central link is able to do that were able to to humanize team to do. Come down and show people that were real or authentic and that we care about connecting them. To the networks that we invest them. That's awesome century Lincoln freed you trouble doing cool things individually and now altogether that's awesome. Thanks real show thanks and thanks for having us. We were talking was calling Dixon director of development and public services for free geek and Cody Hamlin various sales manager for century linked. Microscope is an Entercom radio Portland public affairs program find your clocks. If you have a nonprofit or public affairs organization that you'd like to let others know about it you can email me my email address is microscope that inter com dot com. Remembered Pinter called sort of and he did you can always go to this station's website and click on the community link and submit your information there. If you'd like to hear this program again you can visit our website at microscope PDX dot com thanks for listening to mr. scope and enjoy the rest of your weekend.