How a small charity was able to afford up-to-date software » Charity Digital News

How a small charity was able to afford up-to-date software


When a small Scottish charity’s software became out-of-date, it relied on donations arranged through the technology donation programme  tt-exchange to find the funds for an upgrade.

Set up in 1987, Dumfries and Galloway Family History Society’s encourages the pursuit of family history across three counties in Southwest Scotland. Run by volunteers, it helps people research their ancestry by supplying resources, information and expertise to people who are based in the UK and abroad.

As the charity relies on modern research techniques, having computers available for researchers is crucial.

When the charity realised that it needed to buy new licenses, it was able to upgrade its software cheaply with donations arranged through the tt-exchange programme, which provided them with latest versions of Microsoft Office, Symantec security software and Adobe Photoshop software.

Sandy Pittendreigh, a volunteer at the charity, said of the donation scheme: “Perhaps we could have afforded one system otherwise, but that would have been it. One Office suite alone would have cost us hundreds of pounds – a big chunk of funding! Likewise the Norton software; the scheme provided us with Small Business suite protection, which would have cost us a similar amount otherwise.

The scheme has allowed us to get up-to-date software at a reasonable cost.”

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  • gordonhudsonnu

    You could get open source or free equivalents of these free of charge anyway. Photoshop would be GIMP, Antivirus would be AVG, Microsoft Office would be Libre Office or Google Apps. All would receive automatic updates and can be installed in minutes.

  • Kate Bennett

    The main point about being able to buy software is that you can purchase basic computers with no software and then load it onto the system . This means that instead of buying computers for £400 you can get a bog standard one for £200. We upgraded 10 computers and bought another 13 and including the software the total project cost was les than £3,500.