A company called RRRcomputer.org, founded by Hue Mach, recently started accepting Bitcoin through BitPay. The nonprofit works to help children in poverty achieve success through reused computers. Elizabeth Ploshay, account manager at BitPay, introduced her company to Mach. Ploshay told Cointelegraph:
"Hue is spearheading an initiative to promote education and digital literacy for K-6th graders in the SF Bay area, Bitcoin as a donation method goes hand in hand with RRR's innovation and goal of inclusion."
Mach asks the digital currency community to fight technological waste and to spread awareness about children in need.
The non-profit’s mission is to “divert computers from being sent to recycling centers and send them to the desks of K-6 students instead.” E-waste covers roughly 2% of U.S. landfills, but equals 70% of its toxic waste.
After meeting Mach, Ploshay recognized Hue’s genuine efforts to help young children get the tools they need. Adding Bitcoin to RRR Computer’s donations would help expand currency options and donations to the charity.
While operating his Mac and PC repair business, Mach saw that some appreciated his work, and at times others did not. He got tired of “chasing money” and didn't get the fulfillment from profit-based employment. So he started RRRcomputers.org, which he says offers the following:
- Value: Helping underserved kids and families to master technology
- Vision: Bridging the digital divide one kid and one computer at a time
- Mission: Providing software and hardware training
“After I witnessed first hand the wasteful nature of computers being sent to recycler, I figure that would be a great way to reuse end of life computers for education. That’s way a group of our volunteers work toward that goal in RRRcomputer.org where RRR stands for Reclaim Refurbish Reuse Computer.”
The amount of waste from technology does not go over well with Hue, knowing 20 to 50 million metric tons of e-waste are disposed of worldwide every year. The idea of perfectly operating technology going to landfills invoked Mach’s efforts toward charity and education. At first, the nonprofit gathered volunteers slowly, and over time participation has grown quite a bit since RRR Computers inception, says Mach.
- Hue Mach with volunteers
The company finds ways for these devices to get into the hands of children. The team also offers low-cost Internet to families. The business side offers IT services such as computer repair and software and networking services. They've also created a board of members with a variety of technical backgrounds. The board regularly works out the nonprofit’s initiatives. Mach explains:
“When I went to a contract job in a healthcare company in SF, I saw how wasteful a corporation was by throwing the just decommissioned XP desktop in the recycling bin as if it was not ‘working.’ I asked them to donate to the organization I started, but they said ‘No.’ I worked there and they said no. Those computers could be reused for education for low income K-6 kids.”
Visitors to the site are encouraged to work with RRR to “help bridge the digital divide.” They can reach out to Mach directly. The nonprofit is seeking to partner with afterschool programs and affiliates. Mach’s end goal is to encourage reusing computers for kids’ education. He provides the hardware and software instructions for the underserved kids to “catch up technologically.” With the help of Ploshay and BitPay, Mach intends to use Bitcoin donations to continue his nonprofit’s plan to gather used computers and redistribute them.