A program to get used computer tablets into the hands of special needs children will be seeking donations this Friday.
David McArdle, a pilot for Cummins is organizing the second annual effort by Tablet ReConnect. McArdle got the idea for the project when a friend gave McArdle’s family a used tablet to be used by McArdle’s son with special needs.
“It was amazing seeing the things that he knew, that we didn’t even know that he knew — identifying letters, numbers, shapes, colors,” McArdle said. “All of these things because he just never spoke. So we got to thinking, ‘Why don’t we collect more of these used iPads and give them to these special needs kids who could really use them the most.'”
He said last year’s event generated 40 tablets that were redistributed to those children in Columbus.
“Just hearing the feedback from parents of how well these kids succeed and learn from the interactions on these tablets, has been amazing,” McArdle said. “That is really some of the biggest benefit that comes out of them.”
This year, the effort is hoping that businesses will get involved and donate old tablets when they upgrade to new equipment.
McArdle said the drive will be for any model of used tablet or used cellphone. They can be dropped off from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday at The Commons Mall behind the Chaos sculpture, at the Bartholomew County Public Library, and for Cummins employees, at the Cummins Office Building, the Commons Office Building and the Irwin Conference Center..
Anyone dropping off a working tablet or donating $100 or more will be entered into a contest for an iPad mini. You can find more information at tabletreconnect.com