TOPEKA (KSNT) – Washburn Tech is getting ready to give away cars to people in need. The school will be giving away two refurbished cars as part of its long-running “Recycled Rides” program Thursday morning.

Each vehicle in the giveaway is donated. Then Washburn Tech students work with licensed technicians to refurbish the vehicles before they are given away to families or organizations in need. Local businesses and individuals also donate parts and supplies to get the vehicles on the road again.

Collision Repair Instructor Eric Showalter said they look for cars that will last for years to come.

“We look for cars that the mileage is good on, cars that repairability is inexpensive, and that have good track records as far as holding up for long miles,” Showalter said. “They are a little older than traditionally what other people would giveaway, but for us, we like it because the insurance will be cheaper on the cars. The taxes will be cheaper on the cars.”

Washburn Tech launched its Recycled Rides program in 2011. Since then, they have given away more than 30 vehicles to people in need.

Individuals, as well as nonprofit organizations, are encouraged to apply for the Recycled Rides program. Nomination forms are available on the Washburn Tech website approximately halfway through each semester.

Qualifications include:

  • Have a valid driver’s license
  • Have proof of income/employment or a verifiable job offer
  • Must be insurable with no DWIs or DUIs on your driving record
  • Must not have any other vehicle in the household in working order that belongs to you
  • Must be drug-free and no extensive criminal background
  • Must be able to pay for taxes, license and fees before receiving the vehicle

The next Recycled Rides Rideaway is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Thursday in Building K on the Washburn Tech campus. Click here to find more information about the Recycled Rides program.