On June 30th, 2015, staff and interns from HealthShare Exchange of Southeastern PA (HSX) kicked off their first annual volunteer day with the Philadelphia Children’s Foundation (PCF). The foundation provides donated computers and books to public schools within the Philadelphia School District. Staff from HSX arrived at 8:30 AM to prepare donated computers for re-use by city students and to catalogue donated books for distribution to schools and families.
The volunteers were split into teams, each tasked to work on specific projects. HSX interns D’Angelo Cameron and Ariel Mansilla cleaned and tested old monitors from donated machines. Administrative assistant, Angela McNamee, separated boxes of keyboards and other computer peripherals, placing them in new containers for future use. She was later joined by HSX Executive Director, Martin Lupinetti, who had finished dusting the insides of donated computer towers.
Prepping and Readying Computers, Books
Rana Sharma and Matthew Bastian, also HSX interns, worked on cleaning and reformatting hard drives to be placed in the newly prepared towers. Across from them, Health IT Architect and Domain Expert, John Donnelly, and Senior Director of Information Technology and Chief Information Security Officer, Daniel Wilt, worked to install operating systems specific for school use in the computer units. They then assembled the PCs and tested them for use.
Operations Manager, Natalie Buffone, Senior Director of Member Services and Policy Pam Clarke, and Senior Manager of Engagement & Adoption, Jennifer Natale, curated stacks of donated books from the foundation. They catalogued each title with a reading-level sticker, to help parents and teachers determine the difficulty of a book for student readers.
Crew Breaks One-Day Record
Through the teamwork of staff and interns, HSX managed to sort through two pallets of monitors and other computer peripherals — to ultimately refurbish and assemble 51 computers with hardware and software configured and ready to use. This shattered the previous one-day group record of 35 completed computers. The group also organized 14 crates of books.
Staff members of PCF were extremely excited with the efforts of HSX and placed a HSX T-shirt on their new volunteer hall of fame. The refurbished computers and labeled books will be sent to public schools in the Philadelphia School District to give more students access to online learning tools and youth-friendly reading material.