About the Computers for Schools program

Computers for Schools (CFS) was co-founded in 1993 by Industry Canada and the TelecomPioneers a national volunteer association of active and retired telecommunications professionals. The initiative is led by the federal government and operates through partnerships with a network of not-for-profit organizations, federal departments, provincial and territorial governments, the private sector, schools, school boards and the volunteer sector.

Federal departments and agencies make surplus computer equipment available to CFS as part of the Federal Electronic Waste Strategy. In addition to providing learning tools, CFS strives to reduce the environmental footprint associated with surplus electronic equipment.

Since 1993, over 1.4 million computers have been refurbished and donated across Canada increasing access to technology and digital skills for Canadians so they can thrive in a knowledge-based economy.

CFS refurbishment centres are located across Canada and offer internship opportunities through the Technical Work Experience Program (TWEP). As participants in the Youth Employment Strategy, CFS affiliates hire students and recent graduates from college and university, providing young people with paid, practical on-the-job experience in refurbishment centres across Canada.

Program milestones

Program milestones (full description is located below the image)

Long description

August 1993

Prime Minister Kim Campbell announces the Computers for Schools Program

September to November 1993

Committees are established in 10 provinces

December 1993

First delivery! A truck with 160 computers leaves Ottawa for the Maritimes


Computers for Schools establishes the Technical Work Experience Program

January 1998

Delivery of 50,000 computers to schools and libraries

April 1998

Computers for Schools enters into contribution agreements for the delivery of the program in all provinces and territories

March 1999

Delivery of 125,000 computers to schools and libraries. Prime Minister Jean Chretien and Industry Minister John Manley attend the celebration at Gloucester High School in Ottawa

June 2001

Computers for Schools celebrates the delivery of 250,000 computers. Industry Minister Brian Tobin attends the celebration at Notre Dame High School in Ottawa

August 2003

Computers for Schools celebrates 10 years

February 2004

Delivery of 500,000 computers to schools, libraries and not-for-profit organizations

June 2010

Delivery of 1,000,000 computers to schools, libraries and not-for-profit organizations. Minister Tony Clement attends the celebration at York Street Public School in Ottawa

August 2013

Computers for Schools celebrates 20 years

Source: Computers for Schools statistics

CFS and the environment

CFS is dedicated to preserving the environment. Since 1993, CFS has donated over 1.5 million refurbished computers nationwide.

CFS cooperates with partners across Canada to extend the useful lifespan of federal government and other donors' assets through refurbishment. Extending the life of a computer is the most effective way to reduce its overall impact on the environment. All CFS e-waste is handled by certified recyclers.

E-waste disposed of by fiscal year (full description is located below the image)
Long description

E-waste disposed of by fiscal year (in units, meaning pieces of equipment)

164,692 units were disposed of in 2006-07.

157,400 units were disposed of in 2007-08.

143,740 units were disposed of in 2008-09.

112,088 units were disposed of in 2009-10.

105,016 units were disposed of in 2010-11.

104,859 units were disposed of in 2011-12.

119,601 units were disposed of in 2012-13.

83,929 units were disposed of in 2013-14.

49,489 units were disposed of in 2014-15, up to and including September 2014.

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