Low-income families can receive free computers through various charities that include Freecycle, PCs for People and World Computer Exchange. There are also well-known organizations, such as the Salvation Army and United Way, that provide individuals with free computer resources. In order to obtain a free computer, most organizations require that applicants submit proof of income and verify their identities.
Certain organizations require the person receiving the computer to volunteer some of his time. For instance, the First Chance Project in Michigan provides low-income families with free computers in exchange for 10 hours of community service. There are also organizations that provide refurbished computers for low-income individuals based on a sliding fee scale.
The Santa Barbara Computers for Families Project provides free computers for low-income families along with free computer training courses and Internet access. This program is limited to students that reside in Santa Barbara County.
There are also organizations that provide computers with Internet access to homebound individuals to expand communication and provide them with a doorway to the outside world. The organization Computers for Homebound and Isolated Persons in Tennessee provides free computers and Internet access to disabled homebound individuals as well as the elderly and their caregivers.