|Originally published by School Library Journal on 1/6/09
Digital Wish Makes Librarians’ Tech Dreams Come True
By SLJ Staff
If you’re a librarian short on cash but in need of new technology, sign up on Digital Wish, a nonprofit online charity that helps educators modernize their classrooms with up-to-date resources that they ordinarily can’t afford.
All K-12 media specialists in public schools are eligible to create a free wish list on the site and then describe how their students will benefit from it.
Using Digital Wish's Class Locator, donors can find teachers or schools anywhere in the country. After receiving a cash donation, teachers "go shopping" for the technology they need, and Digital Wish will also donate 2 percent to 10 percent of every order back into a teacher’s shopping cart.
"Librarians are often the force behind technological innovation in schools, and Digital Wish is a great site to help them gain access to technology when school budgets have dried up," says Spokeswoman Polly Davis.
Teachers are also encouraged to spread the word by telling parents or community members about their need.
Since its creation in July 2007, membership on Digital Wish has grown to more than 11,000 and the organization has given more than $50,000 in grants, most of which come from individual donations, says Davis. That number is expected to rise to $75,000 over the next few months.
"It's increasingly difficult for schools to acquire the technology they need to prepare students for tomorrow's jobs in this economy," says Heather Chirtea, Digital Wish's founder. "Every day we hear about funding cuts, so Digital Wish provides a connection between donors and teachers, and every donor counts.”Digital Wish is also a social networking site, where educators can exchange ideas and tech-related lesson plans on a range of subjects, Davis says.
Digital Wish is funded in part by the Draper Richards Foundation, which provides funds and business mentoring to nonprofit organizations.
You can access the original article here: http://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/article/CA6626473.html