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The founders and owners of MacMan, Inc., Julianne and Michael Ohren, knew the value of Apple devices in education. Both of their kids, Tianna and Nicolas learned to use a computer at a very young age. Tianna was only one year old and caught on quickly. As the internet developed, the computer quickly became a tool and source of information that was leveraged by both Tianna and Nicholas to expand their knowledge. Knowing the value of having a computer at home lead to the idea of a donation based program.

 

In December 2019 the Giving Mac program was created as something MacMan did. The initial focus was to help K-12 students that could use an Apple device but did not have the means to obtain one. Donated computers were refurbished and given away. Since the beginning of the program, several very nice used Macs were given away. The program gained local momentum as both TV18 and Volume One did stories on the program.

 

When computer donations started to come in from across Wisconsin as well as other states, the program had to grow. In order to take the program to the next level and provide donation receipts, the Ohren family turned the program into its own entity, Giving Mac, Inc.

Giving Mac is now a non-profit (501(c)(3) public charity, accepting monetary donations and equipment donations. Equipment donations can still be dropped off at MacMan (for refurbishing) while monetary donations can be made online. All donations go directly to Giving Mac. Inc. If you are a business or school with a large number of items to recycle or donate, please contact info@givingmac.org.

 

Monetary donations will be used to obtain parts to fix up older computers, used to purchase new computers, and to run the program. Proceeds from the sale of refurbished computers will be used to buy new computers to give away. 

 

Giving away new computers will have a longer lasting value to those that need them. That being said, we have opened up the program to more than just K-12 students. We now include all traditional and nontraditional students as well. The key use has to be education. 

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Why is Prosperity, in spite of, an integral part of the Giving Mac initiative? This story dates back to 1993 when Michael and Juliane Ohren embarked on the journey of establishing their business, MacMan, Inc.

In pursuit of discussing their business plan, Michael approached a local bank, seeking an appointment with a banker. However, the initial encounter was met with skepticism and a dismissive attitude. The banker laughed at the idea of starting an Apple computer service business, claiming that such ventures in Eau Claire were "a dime a dozen and would never last." Instead of being discouraged, Michael left the office fueled with determination, his attitude of "don't tell me I can't, I will in spite of what you say."

On January 3, 1994, MacMan, Inc. officially opened its doors, becoming the birthplace of the Giving Mac concept 25 years later. Interestingly, the same bank that initially doubted them became a customer of MacMan, Inc. The bank is now operating under a different name and that banker, has retired.

Everyone has their own "Prosperity, in spite of..." story, a tale of overcoming challenges with an unwavering self-motivation. While external support is crucial, the initial effort we invest in our goals is paramount.

In 2013, "Prosperity, in spite of..." secured its place as a registered trademark with the US government. Over the years, merchandise like shirts and wristbands have been sold to inspire others. Now, the Giving Mac initiative seamlessly aligns with these principles, aiming to advance education by sharing technology and fostering prosperity for others.

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