COVID-19 has affected the day-to-day for almost all of us, having us adjust to near-impossible circumstances for work, school, etc. A big sector of people who are affected are students who now have to undergo online learning and rely on an internet connection and computers that will allow them to connect to their classes. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have these tools, however, and they often don’t have other options if their school doesn’t take on any other mode of teaching.
Enter BJ David, a PC-building enthusiast who was inspired by a non-profit organization called FreeGeek in the US and Canada (they collect old computer parts and refurbish them to make affordable computers) and his love for PC building to try and do the same for those who can’t afford computers for their online classes. Working off a referral basis, BJ builds the computers from parts donated to him and the “sponsor” (or the people who referred families in need of these computers) help him get the electronics over to them.
“As PC building is a hobby and stress-relief for me, I figured that I can use my skills and knowledge to contribute a bit,” he said when asked about why he does it.
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Whenever someone has parts to donate, they PM him and he gets to work–a one-man team! But he credits all those who have supported him so far, saying that even if he does the builds by himself, the people who have donated and helped out are also part of the cause. “I do the actual part-picking and building alone, but the effort to complete a build I’d credit to everyone who has supported the cause so far.”
In terms of feedback, the families have been grateful to BJ. “They have been very thankful. I’ve never received any direct feedback from the children, though. It was mostly the parents and the referrers who would express their gratitude to me,” he started. “I also have to thank them for letting me know that we made their lives a bit easier. We’re not exactly trying to feed the world, but it’s still nice to know that we at least gave them a little more breathing room, especially in these trying times,” he added.
If you wish to donate parts, you may PM BJ on Facebook. He prefers parts that have been launched after 2006, as they’re more likely to work with the software that online classes will demand.
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