Siemens Canada helps Calgary's newest residents with donation of more than 200 computers

  • Refurbished laptops will be distributed to Syrian refugees to help with job searches, obtaining community resources and keeping in touch with family


CALGARY, June 28, 2016 /CNW/ - Decommissioned laptops received a second life thanks to Siemens and three reputable charities working to ease the transition to Canadian life for Syrian refugees in Calgary. Siemens employees, charity representatives and Syrian families volunteered at a workshop to complete the refurbishment of the 230 computers that began earlier this month at Siemens' Canadian headquarters in Oakville, Ontario. The workshop was conducted by Corporations For Community Connections (CFCC), a registered Canadian charity founded by Siemens employees, and the laptops will be distributed by the Centre for Newcomers and Calgary Immigrant Women's Association.

The Honourable Deepak Obhrai, P.C., Member of Parliament, Calgary Forest Lawn joined the volunteers to test and clean the computers as well as customize the computers with both English and Arabic language capability.

"I commend Siemens and its employees for reaching out to the Syrian refugees through their laptop refurbishment program. It will immensely benefit these new Canadians as they start their new life in Canada. To Siemens we say thank you." said Hon. Deepak Obhrai, P.C., Member of Parliament, Calgary Forest Lawn.

Over the last four years, Siemens has partnered with CFCC to donate and refurbish 1,371 computers valued at $325,000, and supported 28 charitable organizations, serving more than 7,000 people. More than 300 Siemens Canada employees have volunteered 2,700 hours participating in the workshops.

This year, Siemens Canada will donate over $115,000 in financial support and gifts-in-kind, toward the refurbishment of its decommissioned computers.

"Access to technology is something most of us take for granted, but it can be incredibly difficult to navigate today's digital world without it," explains Robert Hardt, CEO, Siemens Canada. "Our hope is that the donated laptops will help these new Canadians feel more connected, and help them achieve their goals for life here."

CFCC's inception was inspired by discussions between three Siemens Canada employees (CFCC founders Philip Schaus, Otto Rathke, and Chris Campbell) about the wasteful disposal processes in place in most corporations for what is typically three-year-old corporate hardware. Siemens helps reduce its environmental impact by extending the useful life of the laptops, ultimately reducing CO2 emissions and diverting waste from landfills.

"An old proverb says that if you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day; but, if you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime," recalls Philip Schaus, President of CFCC.  "A computer is like a fishing boat, in that it's an essential tool for self-sufficiency."

The refurbishment process involves secure removal of all data from hard drives, as well as physical cleaning, installation of licensed software and testing.

About Siemens Canada
For more than 100 years Siemens Canada has stood for engineering excellence, innovation, quality and reliability. Siemens technology in the fields of electrification, automation and digitalization helps make real what matters to Canadians. From the Atlantic to Pacific oceans, more than 4,800 employees in Canada work together to deliver solutions for sustainable energy, intelligent infrastructure, healthcare, and the future of manufacturing. One of the world's largest producers of energy-efficient, resource-saving technologies, Siemens is a leading supplier of gas and steam turbines for power generation, a major provider of power transmission solutions and a pioneer in infrastructure solutions and automation, drive and software solutions for industry. The company is also a foremost provider of medical imaging equipment and a leader in laboratory diagnostics. Sales for Siemens Canada in fiscal 2015 (ended September 30), were $3.0 billion CAD. The company has 46 offices and 15 production facilities across Canada. Further information is available at

About Corporations for Community Connections, Inc.
Founded in 2010, Corporations For Community Connections, Inc. (CFCC) is a registered charity whose purpose is to refurbish decommissioned corporate computers for donation. To date, CFCC has refurbished over 1300 computers for donation to 28 charitable organizations serving over 7000 people. CFCC encourages corporations to adopt refurbishment as a cost effective, socially and environmentally responsible disposal alternative for computers.

SOURCE Siemens Canada Limited

Image with caption: "Siemens Canada employee Luc Portelance affixes Arabic language stickers to a keyboard at a workshop preparing computers for donation to Syrian refugees in Calgary (CNW Group/Siemens Canada Limited)". Image available at:

For further information: Contact for journalists: Ann Adair, Vice-president, Communications, Siemens Canada, Phone : 416.567.7831, E-mail:, Follow us on Twitter at:


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