Tellico Village Computer Users Club Technology Access Program Committee last week delivered a computer that will serve their 3,000th area child.
Lenoir City Elementary School second grader Hayden Johnson was the recipient. The Family Resource Center took the application, verified that there is no computer in the home and organized the computer exchange.
Hayden, who had just celebrated his birthday, looked over the computer October 3, smiling, as the computer users group sang "Happy Birthday" to him.
Prompted by mother Ashley Johnson, Hayden shyly told his benefactors, "thank you," adding that he planned to use the computer to do homework and to play games.
The TVCUC Technology Access Program provides computers to students who cannot afford them and have none in the home. Often, it is the family's first computer.
Warren Sanders, co-chair of the 25-member group, said seven or eight members work "almost full-time" to refurbish and rebuild the computer systems that would cost about $400 if the family bought it new. Lenoir City Schools superintendent Wayne Miller told Hayden, "These guys don't know how to spell 'retire.' They work all day every day and some nights to fix and give away these computer systems. Anybody that has a computer to throw away, they are after them like ducks on a June bug."
So far, the TVCUC has refurbished about 1,800 computer systems. Most systems go to families that have several children who can use the unit. Children are referred through organizations such as Salivation Army, Boys & Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, Little Tennessee Valley Educational Consortium and other charitable organizations in Loudon and Monroe counties. "We gave away our first system June 2, 2007," Sanders said. The Loudon County Recycling Center salvages computers and keeps them for the club. The Club strips them down to the components, wipes hard drives and rebuilds systems. Miller said technology is important today for success. Anyone who would like to donate a computer or computer components they no longer need to the Technology Access Program may drop them off at 244 Lakeside Plaza, Loudon. Or, if needed, members of the club will pick them up. Call 865+332-5313 or email email@example.com.
The Technology Access Program is a committee of the Tellico Village Computer Users Club, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which also offers computer classes, trouble-shooting answers to questions, computer open houses and more. Visit http://www.tvcuc.org for more information.
BY VICKY NEWMAN - VICKY.NEWMAN@NEWS-HERALD.NET