Following are Frequently Asked Questions about Cisco's Product Grant Program.
Q: What kind of criteria will qualify a non-profit organization for a Cisco Product Grant?
A: The Cisco Product Grant Program is designed to provide access to networking technology for community-based nonprofit organizations (NPOs) operating in the US. In particular, Cisco seeks to support organizations with programs that either focus on improving the quality of education in our communities, and/or focus on meeting -- through direct services -- the basic needs of food, shelter, and health care. Please review the Cisco eligibility requirements to determine whether your organization is eligible to participate in the program.
Q: What types of Product Grants do you offer to non-profit organizations?
A: There are 2 types of grants available: Custom Connectivity and Small - Mid Sized Standard Product Grants. Please refer to the Programs/Guidelines section of the PGP website for more information on each type.
Q: Does Cisco offer basic networking bundles for smaller non-profit organizations?
A: Small - Mid Sized Standard Product Grants are administered through our online partner TechSoup. Through TechSoup's intuitive shopping cart system, you can choose from a variety of Cisco networking products. Please visit TechSoup Cisco FAQ for information and eligibility requirements. The eligibility requirements at the Techsoup site are essentially the same as the eligibility requirements found on this site.
Q: What is a Customized Connectivity Grant?
A: Customized Connectivity Grants are available for complex or non-standard equipment packages to eligible nonprofits. The nonprofit is responsible for selecting the appropriate Cisco products for their request, the product grant team can only provide limited assistance. For some technologies, like VOIP, the nonprofit will be required to contract a certified Cisco partner or to have certified people on staff for implementation and maintenance. Cisco will not provide funding for these.
Q: How do I apply for a Customized Connectivity Grant?
A: The application process begins with an eligibility quiz. To determine if your organization qualifies for a Customized Connectivity grant, please visit our eligibility test quiz.
Q: How long does it take for Cisco to review a Custom Connectivity Grant after submitting an application?
A: Grants are reviewed on a quarterly cycle, with the beginning of the fiscal year on August 1. If approved, the product will then be ordered. Lead time for delivery of products can vary, but are typically from 3 - 6 weeks long, depending on the product.
Q: Are Product Grants available to non-US based community organizations?
A: We are pleased to announce TechSoup Global, a program designed jointly by TechSoup Global and Cisco. TechSoup Global helps nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) or charities outside the U.S. and Canada obtain donations of essential technology products.
Q: Are non-US-based community organizations currently eligible for Custom Connectivity Product Grants?
A: Yes. Please get in touch with us to receive further instructions. The eligibility criteria are the same as for US based organizations
Q: What is the policy on either public or private schools?
A: The Cisco Product Grant Program donates to nonprofits. The program is currently NOT accepting grant applications from public and private schools K-12, colleges, or universities.
Q: Does the Cisco Product Grant Program support sponsorships, music benefits, or fundraising events?
A: No, The Cisco Product Grant Program DOES NOT support sponsorships, Music Benefits, or fund raising events. We donate Cisco Networking products to 501(c)(3) organizations only.
Q: What is the eligibility of museums, aquariums, zoos, and other art institutions?
A: In general we would not support a product donation to a museum, music school, ballets, operas or the arts in general. We support organizations that focus on basic needs (food, housing, and health care), and access to education. Unless an organization of this type submits a highly innovative proposal to provide educational enrichment to low income children or families, it's unlikely that we'd support a product grant to museums, aquariums, zoos, and other art institutions.
Q: Are medical clinics eligible for product grants? What about hospital foundations?
A: Nonprofit 501(c)(3) Medical Clinics are eligible; hospital foundations are ineligible.
Q: Does Cisco loan equipment?
A: Unfortunately, the Product Grant Program does not loan equipment. We provide product grants to qualifying nonprofits.
Q: What should my organization do with equipment that reaches its end of life or is no longer needed?
A: Cisco is a green company. Donated Cisco products that are no longer useful or have reached their end of life can be returned through Cisco's Product Takeback and Recycle program.
Q: Will there be any administrative fees if I request a Product Grant from TechSoup?
A: A small administrative fee is charged for product distribution which amounts to six per cent of Cisco's list price. The admin fee is dependent on the type and quantity of items ordered. The admin fee for all grants from TechSoup will be paid for by the non-profit. You can go to the TechSoup site and review the product list for more information about the admin fees for products. Some admin fees are as low at $15.00. Please visit the Cisco FAQ on the TechSoup site for more information on TSS guidelines and policies.
Q: Does Cisco donate non networking equipment such as PCs or printers?
A: Unfortunately, the Product Grant Program only donates Cisco products. We do not donate PCs, printers, projectors or any other type of equipment.
Q: Are Linksys Products available through TechSoup?
A: We presently do not support donations of Linksys products at TechSoup. Please periodically check this website or TechSoup for further updates.
Q: I am NOT interested in a Product Grant. Where do I apply for a Cash Grant?
A: If you are interested in applying for a cash grant, please visit our cash grants section for more detailed information about our various grant programs.
Q: What is SMARTnet?
A: Cisco SMARTnet support provides you rapid access to vital information and assistance when you need it, including,
For more information see the SMARTnet/SMARTnet Onsite Q&A page.
Q: What is covered under Cisco's product warranty and how is that different than SMARTnet coverage?
A: With all Cisco products, Cisco guarantees the repair and/or replacement of any Cisco product found to be defective. Warranties are limited in both the duration and the support they offer and they do not include Cisco TAC support or software updates. Elements covered under a Cisco warranty include: Hardware-this guarantees that the piece of hardware will be free of defects in material and workmanship under normal use or it will be replaced by Cisco at no charge to the customer. Software-this guarantees that the physical media is free from defects or it will be replaced by Cisco at no charge to the customer. In addition, the warranty guarantees the software generally conforms to the published specifications for the product. The warranty is explicitly "as is" and no new releases are included. For more details, see the link in #1 above.
Q: Does my Cisco Product Donation come with support?
A: Yes, once your product ships to you, Cisco automatically enrolls you for 5 years of SMARTnet support.
Q: Do Linksys products get Cisco SmartNet support?
A: No. Linksys products get Linksys standard Warranty support. See the support tab on the Linksys website for details.
Q: How do I locate the serial number of my Cisco device?
A: The answer will vary by Cisco model. Check the Cisco Product Identification Tool for specific instructions by model.
Q: How do I get support?
A: Once your SMARTnet contract is activated, you will receive a Welcome Kit in the mail that includes your new SMARTnet Contract Number, your inventory of products covered including serial numbers, and useful links to information and to open a case with Cisco's Technical Assistance Center (TAC).
Q: How do I open a case?
A: You may open a case online with a valid CCO ID and password; you can go to the Service Support Center to open a case or to browse the knowledge base of questions and answers.
Q: What do I do if I need support and the Welcome Kit has not arrived?
A: Until all of your equipment has shipped and your SMARTnet contract is activated, you are entitled to Warranty Coverage. See question #2 for what is available with warranty coverage.
Q: What if I don't have my Welcome Kit?
A: Some grantees may have received an email notification of a service extension. If after 4-6 weeks, you have not received a Welcome Kit, or if you have lost yours, you can first try to log into Cisco Service Contract Center to search for your contract details. You can search by using your SMARTnet contract number, by any serial numbers that might be covered under your contract, or by the Cisco Sales Order Number (SO) that the equipment was ordered on. The Welcome Kits are being sent to the install site address in our contract records, so check to see if your install site address is correct. You can then follow the directions in Cisco Service Contract Center to update your contract online. If you cannot find your contract details, or if your contract was NOT extended to 5 years, as it should have been, then send a feedback form to the Cisco Product Grant team using our online contact form.
Q: What is a CCO ID and how do I create one?
A: www.cisco.com is the link to Cisco Connection Online. There is an option to register along the top navigation menu.
Q: Can I look up my Cisco SmartNet contract details online?
A: Yes. Our Cisco Service Contract Center site allows end users to manage their SMARTnet contracts online. You can view your contract details and even update your contract here. Also see the online e-Learning module on this site for instructions.
Q: What if the inventory in my Welcome Kit is incorrect?
A: If any details of your contract or site are incorrect, you can go to the Cisco Service Contract Center to update them. This includes the contact person in your organization that manages these types of service contracts as well as the Install Site address, serial numbersâ€¦. Note that if you ever receive an RMA from Cisco to replace hardware, you should go to Cisco Service Contract Center to remove the old serial number that you returned and replace it with the new one you received.
Q: What do I do when my 5-year SmartNet coverage from Cisco expires?
A: After this period, Cisco does recommend that you continue to purchase Cisco SMARTnet coverage on your own. You can do this by contacting a Cisco Reseller of SMARTnet service to get a quote. You can use the Partner Locator Tool at the Service Contract Center to find a reseller in your area.
Q: What if I no longer use the equipment and therefore do not need to renew SmartNet?
A: When you received your donation from Cisco you signed a receipt acknowledgment form and in doing so agreed to return equipment that is no longer used via Cisco's Take Back and Recycle program. See the Take Back and Recycle for instructions.
"Furthermore, organizations receiving product grants are not allowed to sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of the donated property (or any portion thereof). Equipment that is no longer of use by the organization will be returned to Cisco Systems through the Environmental Stewardship Programs."
Q: Our organization has other Cisco equipment. Can I add these serial numbers to my existing Cisco SMARTnet support contract?
A: We can only donate SMARTnet in conjunction with an eligible product grant. End-users are responsible for obtaining their own Cisco support agreements for any other Cisco equipment they own.
Our Employee Product Donation Program empowers our staff to purchase Cisco equipment at a significant discount and then donate it to qualified nonprofit organizations and schools in the United States.
The Cisco Research Center makes equipment donations to universities as part of an award for a peer-reviewed and approved research proposal. Details at www.cisco.com/research.