HTG VARs Provide Technology Makeover For Texas Charity

VARs Giving Back

As part of Heartland Tech Group's 2012 Summit, VARs and vendors gave their time and money to help Mission Arlington, a Dallas-area charitable organization that helps local families. HTG helped Mission Arlington last year too, but this year the group, led by local VAR Networking Results, as well as HTG, Intel, Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard, provided an "Extreme IT Makeover" for the organization, upgrading almost its entire IT infrastructure.

Pictured here, HTG members and vendors get off the busses at Mission Arlington to do the big "reveal" and put helping hands to work.

Reason To Celebrate

Pictured here, executives get ready for the big "reveal" of the Extreme IT Makeover. Arlin Sorensen, CEO of HTG, said more than 100 VARs stepped up to help Mission Arlington this year, double the number that volunteered last year.

Hands That Give

A film crew captures the reveal of the Extreme IT Makeover and interviews the team from the lead solution provider on the project, Networking Results in Arlington, Texas. The VAR donated almost $10,000 in labor and design time to make the makeover possible.

"We were approached by HTG, and the Hands That Give program they have. They wanted to identify an organization that could use the entire help of HTG. I recommended Mission Arlington last year. They're a sensational organization helping a lot of people," said Jeff Howard, owner of Networking Results.

Heartfelt Thanks

Tillie Burgin, founder of Mission Arlington, shares the Mission Arlington story and thanks the HTG group for returning for a second year in a row.

Mission Arlington serves low-income families and provides backpacks with supplies for students. Last year, the organization handed out 9,000 backpacks, including many that were supplied and packed by HTG members.

This year, in addition to donating those supplies and time filling the backpacks, HTG members and vendors are giving the non-profit organization a technology makeover. Local VAR Networking Results coordinated the effort, which includes the donation of numerous PCs, software and more.

A Little Extra

Arlin Sorensen, CEO and Founder of HTG Peer Groups, presents Tillie Burgin of Mission Arlington with over $1,000 in cash and gift cards from HTG members. HTG will continue its charitable efforts this summer, helping out in Joplin, Mo., site of a devastating tornado last May and home to two HTG members.

Waiting For Deployment

A shot of just some of the equipment donated to Mission Arlington by HP, Intel and Microsoft for the Extreme IT Makeover.

Networking Results conducted an IT assessment and interviewed Mission Arlington's IT technician to get his wish list. Matt Reid, the VAR's director of technical services, designed the new solution.

Mission Arlington's existing infrastructure was eight hand-me down servers that were on their last legs, as well as some older, donated PCs, Howard said. "Some were not even server-class machines. They were PC-class machines running server roles," he said.

On A Mission

Then it came time to put the helping hands to work. Almost 100 HTG members and vendors spent the evening moving boxes of toys for the Mission Arlington Christmas shop, sorting school supplies for the upcoming school year and stacking cases of water for tornado relief efforts.

On the IT front, Networking Results, HTG and the vendors consolidated the organization's IT down to two new Hewlett-Packard ML360 servers running Microsoft Small Business Server.

"It went perfectly. It was one of the smoothest projects we've ever done," Howard said. "They've been very gracious and grateful for the opportunity. They've always just been on old stuff and had to try to figure out the technology on their own."

Helping Hands

More HTG members and sponsors work hard to make a difference in the lives of those served by Mission Arlington year round. Over 1,000 people come through the Mission Arlington facilities each day for assistance.

All told, Networking Results donated more than $10,000 worth of time and resources to the project, and the vendors along with HTG donated tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment.

The HP PCs contain Intel vPro technology, and Networking Results is also working with Mission Arlington on how the VAR might remotely monitor and manage their IT moving forward. "One of my employees said this is a great organization, what can we do to help them," Howard said.

Thumbs Up

Eric Townsend, SMB and MSP marketing director at Intel, jumped right in to lend a helping hand sorting toys for the Mission Arlington Christmas shop. Townsend said Intel wants to be more than a vendor to HTG members. "We want to be a partner and really work not just with technology but also in the community," said Townsend.

Intel donated some equipment and helped with marketing around the extreme tech makeover as well as provided volunteer resources, but the most credit should go to Networking Results, said Townsend. "They're super, really involved. It's typical HTG; they don't do anything halfheartedly. They're all in," he said.