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Residents turn out for computer giveaway by SIUE East St. Louis Center, PCs for People

Leach Krishae, of East St. Louis, receives a free desktop computer at the SIUE East St. Louis Center, through the efforts of PCs for People and the SIUE East St. Louis Learning Resource Center. 

More than 200 desktop and laptop computers were given away to eligible Metro East residents on Thursday, Sept. 29 at the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville East St. Louis Center.

The computer giveaway was made possible by PCs for People and the SIUE East St. Louis Learning Resource Center (LRC), according to Sarah Kirkpatrick, director of the LRC and Campus Engagement.

“This computer will mean a lot to my family,” said Leach Krishae, of East St. Louis, who received a desktop computer. “One of my daughters and I are starting nursing school in January. This computer will be a big help with studying and completing assignments. I also have a daughter in middle school and high school, and the computer will help them, too.”

“I received a desktop computer, and it was a blessing,” said Vanessa Johnson, of East St. Louis. “My computer was 20 years old and didn’t work. I babysit for my seven-year-old niece, Camilla, and she can use this computer for schoolwork.”

Willie Sanders, of East St. Louis, also plans to use his computer for schoolwork. “I’m taking computer programming at Southwestern Illinois College. This computer is going to help me out a lot. PCs for People is a great program.”

“Access to technology should be essential and not a luxury,” said CeAira Sargent, PCs for People managing director for the Metro East. “We had a great turnout and made a good impact on the area. We are extremely grateful to partner with SIUE’s LRC. We like to meet people where they are, and we can only do that with support and collaboration.”

Eligibility requirements included Illinois residents who were currently enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Federal Public Housing Assistance, Veterans Pension Benefit Program, or customers whose household income is less than 135% of the federal poverty guidelines. The project was funded by a Broadband Regional Engagement for Adoption + Digital Equity (READY) grant.

The SIUE East St. Louis Learning Resource Center (LRC) is organized as a full-service public library focusing on youth and adult community outreach, programs and collections. The library also contributes to the success of higher education opportunities and career development provided by the East St. Louis Higher Education Campus (ESLHEC). The LRC supports the diverse range of students and public patrons on the ESLHEC and encourages them to succeed and learn new skills provided by the LRC community collection and programs.  

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