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HMP The Mount Prison teaches inmates IT skills with PC refurb scheme

HMP The Mount has become the first prison to offer a scheme that sees inmates refurbish old PCs that are then donated to worthwhile causes.

The computers will be sold onto charities for around £60 each, as well as disadvantaged communities and schools.

Prisoners at the Mount will attend refurbishment workshops where they will be trained in the hardware and software skills required to build, configure and troubleshoot PCs.

After this, it is hoped inmates will have skills that they can then use in workplace when they are released, with the hope this could help reduce the rate of re-offence.

“We are delighted to have launched the first Computers4All [the not-for-profit backing the scheme] refurbishment centre here. This is a scheme that looks set to bring huge benefits for prisoners participating in the training,” claimed Steve Bradford, the prison’s governor.

He added that inmates do not have Internet access or access to internal computer systems, but the skills they learn will have real value to them when re-entering the workplace.

However, Computers4All has pointed out that although the Mount is currently processing the first 300 PCs, resellers are in need to support the scheme to supply it with more kit, claiming that it’s a great way to reduce waste.

“The refurbishment of old computer equipment offers environmental and social benefits as equipment that would otherwise be ‘retired’ or disposed of can be put to good use again,” claimed Mark Abrahams, Computers4All CEO.

“Around 126,000 tonnes of IT equipment is simply dumped in landfill sites annually; anything we can do to reduce this waste can bring dividends all round,” he added.