September 19, 2017
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Saturday: Connecting people to low-cost computers at Bangor’s Goodwill

Goodwill will host a technology event in the Bangor store 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 12. There are a lot of people around Bangor who can’t afford a computer, so Goodwill is bringing in a team of techies to help people find affordable computers and show them how to use them.

Goodwill recently launched a technology access program that gets refurbished computers into the hands of people who need them, for as little as $125 — and that includes the operating system and Microsoft Office already installed. There are income guidelines, for instance a family of four with an annual income of up to $47,100 would be able to get reduced-price computers. Twenty of these computers will be available at the store on Saturday.

“This program is so important to families around Maine. We want to make sure everyone who needs a computer for work, school or leisure can access one,” said Joe Pooler, GoodTech’s manager. “Bangor and Orono have a lot of struggling families and the universities, so we know it’s a high-need area for quality technology. We’ll be there all day to help pair people with good computers. Each person will have a chance to test drive all of the available computers before choosing which one to buy.”

There will be at least 50 computers for sale. The team may also bring some iPhones and gaming consoles. All of the items were donated to Goodwill, cleaned to U.S. Department of Defense standards (keeping information safe), repaired and packaged by Goodwill employees.

Goodwill uses revenue from its stores for innovative workforce programs.

“GoodTech is all about work. Refurbishing these otherwise-wasted electronics provides jobs and technology job training, which is scarce here in Maine; plus the computers go home with people who can use them for their work or to find work. On top of that, the money we make goes back to helping others find work. That’s what we’re all about,” Pooler said.

Anyone who would like to safely dispose of their old technology can bring it to the store.
The Maine Mall-area Goodwill store in South Portland will also have a technology event, but on Friday, with 20 regular computers and 15 technology-access program computers available from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 11.

For more information on GoodTech, visit https://goodwillnne.org/stores/goodtech/