As the end of the week nears, we have organised most of the next months schedule in terms of transport, accommodation, training and schools to be visited. We are a little ahead of schedule so today we were afforded the opportunity to visit a Girls school which would like to receive a future shipment of Camara computers and a school in the adjacent shanty town called Changa Changa.
The Girls school had 20 computers but they were in need of repair. We spent the morning testing the machines and wrote up a technical report which will be used over the next month by the volunteers when they return to this school to perform a full upgrade and fix any machines that are broken. It was not part of the plan but it would be a shame to leave this schools computer room filled with useless equipment. Claire and Justin said that they might be able to fit a few training days in for the school’s technical teachers so that they could fix future problems.
The Changa Changa shanty town has one school. The local children attend because they are provided with a safe environment and nourishment during the day. The equipment and teachers are both inadequately provided for in terms of resources and training, the Christian Brothers here provide books and radios but its not enough. They have said thatthe majority of their past pupils have died from HIV. It was an extremely difficult visit and our heart strings were grasped as we were given an impromptu song by the children in one class as we entered. As ‘Irelands Call’ was sung in perfect harmony, Justin, Claire and I stood in silence, it was a very emotional and moving gesture by the 40 8-10s. There is another visit planned to that school but it will be done in two’s and three’s to limit any misinterpretation of a voyeuristic outing. The volunteers need to experience what we did and hopefully they will take onboard what is required to achieve change in a country like that sees over 40% of its population die from HIV. We would hope that the children hereill be able to travel up to our nearby computer lab and learn from both the educational and HIV awareness software programs that will be available on each of those Camara computers.