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News Updates

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Official opening for Sierra Leone Connect project - 2004 Jul 23
Sierra Leone Connect, a collaboration between Action Aid and Digital Links, was officially launched in Bo on 7 th June 2004 by the Sierra Leone Minister of Education. The project has so far supplied 360 computers to 10 schools, a teacher training college, health institutions, community access centres and strategic government offices in Bo including the police. In addition, 65 men and women working in these institutions have been trained in computer maintenance and networking.
Source: Digital links

RM pledge 7,000 computers - 2004 Jul 23
RM plc, a leading provider of computer equipment in schools in the UK, are set to become Digital Links' biggest donor of computers to date by supplying 7,000 computers over the next six months. The computers, which are becoming available as part of an IT refresh programme involving 112 schools in the Dudley area, have already started arriving at the Digital Links depot at the rate of 250 per week.
Source: Digital links

Sainsbury Trusts funds major East African expansion - 2004 Jul 13
Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts have given Digital Links a major boost by providing £130,000 funding for the significant scaling up of operations in East Africa. Through the opening of a regional office in Nairobi , Digital Links will replicate the successful Kenyan school computerisation project in Uganda and Tanzania . The project will take a long-term, sustainable approach but is expected to produce significant results within two years. This will include the deployment of 1,200 computers into 60 schools giving over 200,000 young people their first access to computers, and the training of over 700 teachers in ICT.
Source: Digital Links

An integrated training programme to set up technical service centres in support of education in African schools - 2004 Jun 18
This comprehensive course, available in English and soon in French, covers the spectrum of activities from sourcing and procuring PCs ( particularly second-hand PCs), to setting up technical service centres as maintenance and support centres, to the environmentally-responsible disposal of end-of-life PCs, from an African perspective. It contains a wealth of reference materials and case studies on the African experience and integrates issues of gender equality, making it the first of its kind in Africa.
Source: SchoolNet Africa

Microsoft Announces PC Refurbishment Program for 133 Countries Through The Microsoft Authorized Refurbishers (MAR) program - 2004 Apr 15
Microsoft Announces PC Refurbishment Program for 133 Countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa Program helps under-served communities, schools and NGOs realise their potential through easier and affordable access to technology.
Source: CSRwire

Resources

Are we wasting the refurb opportunity?
It requires a strategy that includes dealing with issues such as on-going support and maintenance, as well as the appropriate application of refurbished PCs to suit particular environments. Projects like SchoolNet Namibia and NetDay show that this can be done successfully using a thin client network – ideal, it seems, for the mass-roll out of network solutions in the education sector in Africa.
Source: Alan Finlay, Partner in Open Research [1360]
CommentrefurbishedPCs.pdf

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