Non-Profit Handing out Free Computers to Address "Digital Divide" in North Texas

free computers
Photo credit courtesy Alan Scaia
By NewsRadio 1080 KRLD

DALLAS (1080 KRLD)- A non-profit is working with the City of Dallas and Fort Worth ISD to hand out hundreds of free computers and wifi hotspots this week. Comp-U-Dopt is working with the City of Dallas and TXU Energy to make 400 laptops Monday and Tuesday.

"Even taking into account what schools have been doing in terms of giving out devices, there are still about 15,000 households in Dallas that don't have access to a computer at home," says Comp-U-Dopt Chief Executive Megan Steckly.

Steckly says 46% of low-income families do not have internet access at home. She says the computers can help students with distance learning, but they can also provide access to services like telemedicine, learn options to avoid evictions or apply for jobs.

"Not only are they closing the gap with distance learning, but they're also a device for the whole family to be connected to social support services," she says.

Families must apply online at compudopt.org. They must have a child enrolled in kindergarten through 12th grade and are entered into a lottery.

Families selected in a lottery will be able to receive computers and two years of internet access Tuesday at MLK Jr. Community Center at 2922 Martin Luther King Blvd in Dallas. Comp-U-Dopt will give away computers to selected families Tuesday and Thursday afternoon at James Middle School in Fort Worth at 1101 Nashville Avenue.

The computers and two years of internet access are provided. Comp-U-Dopt is a non-profit and is taking donations at compudopt.org/donations.