Free Geek will be closed on Thursday, December 13th for a staff inservice day.


Is your nonprofit in need of technology to help meet your mission?

Free Geek’s Hardware Grants program connects qualifying nonprofits with free and low-cost refurbished technology. We serve over 150 different organizations every year. 

Eligibility requirements

Please read this criteria thoroughly to determine if our Hardware Grants program can appropriately serve your organization’s needs.

  • Must be a 501c(3) nonprofit organization, or under fiscal sponsorship of a nonprofit or government-affiliated agency.
  • Must dispose of the hardware in an environmentally responsible manner when it has reached the end of its lifecycle.
  • Applicants requesting laptops must be located within the Portland metro area.
  • Must be able to pick up the hardware in person from Free Geek’s office in Portland, Oregon. Grants are provided unboxed. We do not ship technology to grantees. Please note that shipping your granted technology voids the tech support warranty.
  • We ask that grant recipients cultivate a positive relationship with Free Geek, including posting about grants received on your newsletters and social media, to help raise awareness about our program.
  • Eligible organizations may not submit multiple applications within a grants cycle.
  • Eligible organizations must wait 90 days after the fulfillment of a grant to reapply.

Who is not eligible?

  • Individuals are not eligible for grants. Please review our volunteer opportunities for earning a desktop computer.
  • We rarely make grants to international organizations. This is due to difficulty in verifying the organization’s status and responsible recycling when the equipment becomes obsolete. Check out the World Computer Exchange for international alternatives.

What we grant

Free Geek makes in-kind grants of refurbished electronic equipment. The computer hardware that we grant is used and come to us via donations made by individuals and organizations in our community. It is then tested and built by our staff and volunteers.

We primarily grant complete PC computers which come installed with Linux Mint as an operating system. These systems are excellent for typical office tasks, such as word processing and browsing the web. 

Approved grant recipients are eligible for a 20% discount in The Free Geek Store.




    Hardware Grant desktop example
    Desktop PCs
    • i3 processor between 2.4 and 3.2GHz speed or faster
    • 4 GB of DDR3 RAM
    • 250GB or larger hard drive
    • 64-bit system
    • DVD R/W optical drive
    • On-board video
    • Onboard Ethernet (not WiFi)
    • Limited upgrades are available for a fee
    • Operating system: Linux Mint (not Windows)
    • Monitor, mouse, keyboard, power cables provided
    Example Hardware Grant laptop
    Laptop PCs
    • 2011 i3 or newer processor
    • 4GB of DDR3 RAM
    • 250GB or larger hard drive
    • Optical (CD or DVD) drive
    • Wireless networking (WiFi) ability
    • Minimum 50% original battery capacity
    • Operating system: Linux Mint (not Windows)
    Hardware Grant iMac example
    iMacs 9,1 (early 2009 Mac desktops)
    • 2.66 gHz or greater Core 2 duo CPU
    • 4 GB DDR3 (PC3-8500/1066 MHz)
    • 250GB HARD Drive
    • Optical (CD or DVD) Drive
    • Wireless networking (WiFi) ability
    • Mac OS 10.11 installed (not compatible with most current version of Mac OS)
    • 20-inch screen or bigger
    • Built-in webcam
    • Keyboard, mouse, power cable provided

    Custom requests

    • We can often provide grants of other hardware if available. Special requests are reviewed on a monthly basis. Please be specific in your application about the type and number of items you need.
    • The quantity of technology available per grant cycle changes seasonally in relation to our supply.
    • We are limited in our ability to grant non-functioning or untested equipment. Please feel free to apply and specify your exact needs. We will work with you to determine eligibility.

    Technical support

    Granted computers come with a one-year warranty and access to technical support at our location in Portland, Oregon. Exceptions: 

    • Free Geek provides technical support for Linux hardware and software.
    • For Macs and for PCs with Windows installed, tech support covers hardware. It does not cover software.
    • Shipping your granted technology voids the tech support warranty.

    View full warranty and policy

    "By refurbishing and granting electronic equipment, Free Geek allows nonprofits like the one where I volunteer to more efficiently carry out their missions... Free Geek helps us maintain a very low-overhead operation, with funds spent on programs, not on computers."

    Michael Hale, volunteer at Portland Taiko

      Application deadlines

      Applications for our standard granted items are reviewed on a rolling basis. You can expect to hear back from us on your application status within three weeks. For time-sensitive grants, please apply at least six weeks in advance to allow time for processing your application and fulfilling your grant. We cannot guarantee that grants will be fulfilled by a requested date.

      We can often provide grants of other hardware, if available, and special requests are reviewed monthly. Please apply by the last Wednesday of the month to be considered in the next month’s review cycle.

      Download the full application

      Need a full preview? Download the full hardware grants application. Note: You must apply online. Paper applications are not accepted.  

      Apply Online

      Have you thoroughly read this page, and found that you’re eligible for a grant? Continue on to the hardware grant application.