Published On: Tue, Aug 11th, 2020

Parkland Teen Develops A Tech Connect Drive To Donate iPads For Patients In Need

Rising senior at North Broward Preparatory, Ryan Burns drives door to door in the Parkland area collecting iPads to donate to patients in need. 

Ryan was inspired to start the donations after his 75-year-old grandmother spent a week alone in a hospital in Queens, New York with no visitation permitted amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Founder/President of the Tech Connect Drive
Ryan Burns.

When Ryan’s grandmother finally received an iPad from his father, William, the CFO of Cross Country Healthcare he could see that it was a positive distraction for her. 

Unfortunately, every patient does not have the capabilities to access technology the way Ryan’s family did. 

Last month, Ryan decided to spend his free time creating Tech Connect Drive, an organization dedicated to collecting used iPads and tablets from neighbors, friends, and local residents to donate to hospital patients who lacked those resources. 

Before becoming the Founder/President of the Tech Connect Drive, Ryan found other ways to serve his community. Ryan has volunteered with SOS Children’s Villages, HOPE South Florida, and promoted Light The Night. 

Ryan’s father is the Corporate Walk Chairman for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light The Night, a walk to build awareness of blood cancers as well as raise money for research and support of patients and their families. 

“Sending my grandmother an iPad actually relieved her stress about being in the hospital. Another time when my father got diagnosed with leukemia, having the iPad changed his mindset and was another positive distraction for him” said Ryan. 

Currently, Ryan has collected 22 iPads and fully reconfigured five of them.

Ryan has been putting up flyers at local businesses and promoting the drive to receive more donations for patients at Colonial Assisted Living at Fort Lauderdale, West Boca Medical Center, and Broward Health Coral Springs. 

Ryan’s donations primarily focus on hospitals but he hopes to donate the iPads to nursing homes and rehab centers in the future. 

Image courtesy of Ryan Burns.

Ryan urges residents are interested to get involved in donating any way they can and would love to send donations all over South Florida. 

“If they might not have an iPad but know of a facility in need of it, they can contact me,” said Ryan. 

Ryan is taking steps to make the Tech Connect Drive a non-profit organization and he said he would like to continue donations even after the pandemic. 

Ryan driving to homes for contactless pick-up of anyone donating a device. Students willing to help with the drive will be able to get community service hours as well. 

To learn more about donating a device or receive more information, text “donation” to 954-870-3224 or email Ryan at [email protected] or use this link .

About the Author

- I am a senior at Florida Atlantic University majoring in Multimedia Studies with a concentration in Journalism and minor in Communications. I am a Newsroom Writer for the Boca Raton Tribune who strives to use my passion for writing not only to inform the public of current events but to encourage and empower the community to enact change.

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