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The Cisco Donation Program

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The Cisco Systems donation program at TechSoup provides an assortment of wired and wireless networking hardware products to eligible nonprofits and charities throughout the United States.

You can request all the Cisco equipment and hardware necessary to create a functioning network through this program (only additional wiring may be required).

Do Not Combine with Other Requests

Note that if your organization is requesting Cisco and non-Cisco products, you must place a separate request for the non-Cisco items.

Eligibility and Restrictions

If eligible, your organization may receive one donation of Cisco products within a fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) with administrative fees totaling up to $2,500.

Caution: Affiliates of national organizations with more than 20 locations are not eligible for Cisco donations. This is true even if your affiliate is considered a separate entity and is not funded by the national organization. Examples of national organizations are the YMCA and the American Red Cross.

Consult the eligibility and restrictions page to review your organization's eligibility to participate in this program.

Shipping and Fulfillment

You can expect your donation request to be fulfilled within eight weeks of the approval date. For detailed fulfillment information, see the Obtaining Your Product section of each product's page.

Due to the nature of the network design, product availability, and fiscal year schedules, all product donations are subject to change or delay without notice. Cisco reserves the right to substitute functionally equivalent products for any request.

SMARTnet Service, Support, and Returns

Cisco donations include a five-year SMARTnet contract to help organizations install and maintain their systems. Benefits include technical support, replacement or repair of damaged products, and software updates. See Register and Maintain Your SMARTnet Contract for detailed information about registering, maintaining, and using your contract.

If your SMARTnet contract expires, we strongly encourage you to renew your SMARTnet service and support agreement annually (at your own expense) for as long as you own the equipment or until that equipment is declared end-of-life (EOL) and no longer supported by Cisco. Learn how to register and access these benefits.

For products that arrive damaged or inoperable, use the Cisco warranty or your SMARTnet contract.

For incorrect product shipments, within 60 days of receipt of the items, email with "CISCO RETURN REQUEST" as the subject line and include the following:

  • Your organization name
  • Your TechSoup donation confirmation number
  • A list of the products you would like to return
  • Your reason for returning the products

Our Cisco donation program representative will review your request and get in touch with you to make arrangements for the return.

For other product issues, Cisco generally does not accept returns. However, if you have special circumstances that you would like us to review, send us an email as described above.

To receive a refund on products requested through the Cisco Donation Program, items should be returned within 60 days after delivery is complete for all products in your request.

Cisco Takeback and Recycle Program

Cisco is a green company. Donated Cisco products that are no longer useful or have reached their end of life can be returned to Cisco through the Takeback and Recycle program. It is open to all users of Cisco equipment and its associated brands and subsidiaries.

Cisco Product Grant Program

The Cisco Product Grant Program is another option for some nonprofits to receive Cisco networking products. This program offers individual nonstandard networking bundles as donations to select nonprofits. For more information, see the Cisco Product Grant program.

Eligible organizations can receive donations from either the Cisco donation program at TechSoup or the Cisco Product Grant Program, but they can't receive donations from both programs during the same fiscal year.


Unless you have a dedicated networking or IT professional on staff, you should consider hiring a consultant. The administrative fee for Cisco products doesn't include installation of your networking equipment. For more information about hiring a consultant, read TechSoup's articles on consultants.

How to Join

Not a TechSoup member?

  1. Sign up
  2. Register or associate with an organization
  3. Request products and services
Join now