Sarkuwa: A snapshot of my adventures

My time in Sarkuwa is finished.  I’ve had a lovely time there, and all of the people I’ve met have been great.  I regret not having more time there, as there is much more to be done, but my time is limited.  The computers are working now and we hope that they will stay that way for some time to come.

Janata HS School, Sarkuwa

Now, Janata currently has a small networked lab in their head office, consisting of 1 IBox, 1 dektop, and 1 laptop.  There is another laptop in a locked cupboard, but the key couldn’t be found when I was there, so I was unable to verify it’s status.  I have been told by Megh that 5 more computers, which were promised by an NGO a long time ago, should be arriving in a couple of weeks.  There are network cables there for those computers when they arrive, so they can also connect to the network.  I am also told the new building will be finished soon, and the computers will move to their own room.

There are two main problems I see with the computer lab at Janata.  The first is the electricity in Sarkuwa.  There is nothing we can do about this short of a large and expensive solar an or battery system, but it is a problem.  They commonly have electricity for a couple hours in the morning, and only sometimes do they have electricity in the afternoon.  This gives them very little time to utilize their computer lab.  The long periods without electricity also affect the preformance of the IBox.  The IBox is set up to download web pages and email in the evening and at night, when the connection is better, but if the electricity goes out for too long, even with the IBoxes battery, it will turn off, and nothing can be downloaded.

The second problem I see at Janata is the lack of computer knowledge.  If I had more time, I would’ve like to been able to teach them more about the use of the internet and email, but on my tight schedule, I was only able to show them the basics briefly.  The school has an email address: janata [at]janata.wizzy.org.za

But email is a very new concept to many of the people there, and at the moment, I’m not sure how much it will get used.  I was able to briefly show them how to log in to their email, to read new mail, and to create a message, but I didn’t have enough time to make sure they fully understand.

The motivation and interest is there, which is the important part, so they are going to have to experiment, and be self motivated learners.  I have also asked the teachers at Janata to arrange with Hari a time for Hari to teach them more about their computers.  Hari is very knowledgeable about computers, and has agreed to teach the staff at Janata, to help them with their computer lab, and look after them.  I hope these arrangements will be made, as it would be very benificial for the staff at Janata to take a class from Hari.

Global Computer Center (GCC)

The GCC now has an IBox to serve their internet connection, and their lab is now networked, allowing internet access from every machine.  Hari has been trained on the full use of the IBox.  His email address is: harry [at] gccsera.wizzy.org.za

The GCC will be the center for computer upliftment in this area, as Hari is very knowledgable and willing to help.  He has agreed to oversee the IBox at Shanti, and the lab at Janata, helping out with training and troubleshooting where ever he can.  Thank you Hari for your on going commitment to furthering computer education.

Shanti HS School, Kusmi Sera

I set up a stand alone IBox for Shanti HSS to use, and when I departed, I had left it with Hari at GCC to work out the final details.  They had activated their phone for internet use, so our courier system is not neccessary, and they were waiting for it to come online.  I have recieved an email from Hari confirming that the phone has been activated and is working.  They are still working out a few details like security bars on the windows etc… but the computer will be moved from GCC to Shanti very soon.  I have worked with Narayan Acharaya about this computer, and he will over see it’s use at Shanti.  His email is: nacharaya [at] shanti.wizzy.org.za

I will update again when I have confirmation that the computer is set up at Shanti and being used.

Over all, I had a wonderfull couple of weeks in Sarkuwa.  The people were marvelous, and treated me like family.  Thank you to Megh Raj and Manikalla for their hospitality, and to every one in Sarkuwa.  I am happy to see these changes being made there, the people are motivated and dedicated, and they deserve the best.  I hope these computer systems will make a large impact on their lives, and will continue to grow and spread.  My time in Nepal is nearly up now, which is sad, but I hope to return in the near future and have a chance to work with all of you again.

Please add my email to the Sarkuwa email list, I would like to keep in touch with every one.  My email is: kelsey [at] wizzydigital.org

Thank You all
Kelsey

About Article:

Project Category: Project: Rural Education Nepal
Article Category: Memoir
Author: Kelsey Wood
About Author: Kelsey Wood was working at WizzyDigital.com who volunteered with CFFN to setup off-line Internet accessing laboratory at Janata HS, Sarkuwa, Baglung, Nepal

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