by Rita Johnson LTLS Network Manager
DONATED AND DEEPLY DISCOUNTED HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE FOR PUBLIC LIBRARIES
TechSoup Stock is a nonprofit program that distributes donated and deeply discounted software and technology products (e.g. Cisco networking hardware) to eligible nonprofit organizations. All products are available either for a small administrative fee, if donated, or at deeply discounted prices. Over 1000 public libraries have taken advantage of product donations at TechSoup Stock since 2004. To see a listing of programs available for all public libraries, please visit: http://www.techsoup.org/stock/libraries/default.asp
There are additional programs only available for 501(c)(3) public libraries.
Each of TechSoup Stock’s donated and discounted product programs has specific eligibility guidelines. Visiting this website will describe each program’s eligibility requirements and donor partner restrictions: http://www.techsoup.org/stock/restrictions.asp
For an overview of how to join and register your organization with TechSoup, please visit this website: http://itshrunk.com/3ecd77
While trying to determine whether or not a library is eligible for a certain product can be confusing, but calling 1-415-633-9300 and talking to any one of Tech Soup’s very knowledgeable and helpful staff can result in substantial savings for both hardware and software.
In addition to saving money, there are TechSoup Forums designed for non-profit organizations, where people share ideas and tips on a variety of subjects and announce other sites offering free or nominally priced services or products. For example, there is a forum on “Viruses and Security” where people share their experiences with anti-spam and firewall products. Other forums include open-source software, web building, technology planning, fundraising, wireless connectivity, emerging technologies. To visit the forum list, please visit: http://itshrunk.com/654fa0
There is also a Learning Center that provides how-to's, worksheets, case studies, profiles, and product comparisons written for all budgets and levels of technical expertise on much the same topics as the Forums. Please visit: http://www.techsoup.org/learningcenter/index.cfm for a list of Learning Center subjects. There is even a Green Tech Initiative where one can find tools and tips for greening your nonprofit through sharing and learning more about technology choices that can help reduce our overall impact on the environment: http://www.techsoup.org/greentech/index.cfm