The Laptop Upcycle project and team will take responsibility for the space, located in the lower level of the United Way. Regretably the space will no longer function primarily as a Makerspace. Going forward, HackNCraftNJ will continue to maintain its online presence and meet locally or in the lab as scheduling allows. HackNCraftNJ will continue to be active in the community.
Laptop Upcycle’s mission of providing technology tools to low income students in Montclair will be the group’s main priority. We are pleased that this focus will help the group to expand its educational programming in the space. The timing of this change is still pending, but will most certainly be before the end of this year.
HackNCraftNJ was founded in early 2014 by Jon Bonesteel, Chuck Fletcher, Frank Gibbons, and Peter Kaplan. Together, along with valued assistance from other likeminded supporters, we set out to create a local place for those with similar interests to get together, share equipment, learn new skills, exchange ideas and work on technical projects. Our shared goal was to expand that start to reach others locally with the intention of building a community of Makers in Montclair. We are proud of the success we shared.
We participated in many community events in support of our mission, from STEM events in our local schools, to MakerFaires in Newark, West Orange, and even Queens, NY. We also offered many classes and co-working sessions at the lab in Montclair. Attendance was always great and everyone had a lot of fun. Thank you to everyone who joined us. We made a lot of friends and we learned much about tech and the market for tech labs locally.
The HackNCraftNJ 501(c)3 will be renamed to Laptop Upcycle, and the nonprofit Bylaws will be updated and filed with the State of NJ and the IRS to support this change. After the transition is completed, HackNCraftNJ will no longer operate as a stand-alone nonprofit, but will have the opportunity to continue nonprofit oriented activities through its relationship with Laptop Upcycle.
The mission of Laptop Upcycle to provide laptops and free wifi to those who need it will be enhanced to include a number of education efforts to support the installed user base and anyone else who is interested in coding. Laptop Upcycle will expand the coding together concept we initiated with the CS50 meetup group, as we hope to build a coding community as a part of the Upcycle mission. It’s an exciting project and if you’re interested in joining it, please see the Laptop Upcycle page at http://laptopupcycle.org.
In closing, we would simply like to share our sincere thank you to everyone who joined us and all who we met over the years. We mean this when we say, please stay in touch and continue to share your passion for learning and making.
Jon, Chuck, Frank, and Peter