RealTime IT News

Putting (Some Of) IT Back

[Sydney, AUSTRALIA] IBM, Compaq, Dell, Com Tech, Cisco and others have joined a charity initiative called Putting IT Back- a fund to help children's charities the Starlight Children9s Foundation and Giant Steps.

On November 17, employees and the general IT community will be asked to contribute money from a few dollars to a day's pay. The initiative will involve the staff of IT companies including Com Tech Communications, IBM, Compaq, Optus, Cisco and Dell. Other participating companies to date include NEC/Packard Bell, Lucent, Lotus, MYOB, f2, Citrix, Powerlan, Volante, eSign, Sun, Professional Advantage, Davnet, Austar Pay TV, Web Methods, Quicken and eCorp.

The Australian Information Industry Association is also involved in the project. Rob Durie, executive director of AIIA said "We will be actively encouraging our members to participate and will be initiating a range of activities to help ensure the success of the fund."

David Shein, chairman of Com Tech Communications, initiated the fund. "This is an opportunity for the IT community to rally together and support those less fortunate. We see this as a chance for the industry to give back to the community in a very real and positive way," Shein said.

The goal for the IT fund is to raise AUS $250,000. Organizers expect this target to be easily exceeded. Jill Weekes, CEO, Starlight Children9s Foundation said 440 children are currently waiting for wishes to be granted. Most wishes involve either meeting a celebrity or receiving a computer, or a simple family holiday. The average cost of a wish is $4,000. The funds raised will go toward granting wishes, the Starlight Express Rooms, located in children9s hospitals around the country, Starlight Fun Centers equipped with bedside entertainment for kids, mobile Express Rooms that visit country and regional hospitals and Giant Steps programs. Participants' tax-deductible donations will be directly debited from their payroll and they will receive feedback on how their money is being utilized.