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Sri Lanka IT Project - developing IT skills in local communities

IT Project in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a country swathed in palm fringed beaches, tea plantations and lush tropical forests. A country which contrasts the tragedy of the Tsunami with smiling children, rickshaws, orange-robed monks and Buddhist temples. Sri Lanka is popular with tourists and volunteers.

In the 21st century, computer literacy is a skill which is valued almost as highly as standard literacy! It is therefore a huge advantage to learn the basics of computer use and this is something which our volunteers can help with. By sharing their knowledge of IT with students and teachers alike, volunteers increase the prospects of each individual they help.

Just like children throughout the world, Sri Lankan children are fascinated by computers and eager to learn how to use them. Teaching such a useful skill is invaluable, both to individuals and the communities they live in. From developing a better understanding of computers, job opportunities which would not previously have been available, present themselves. With IT skills, children also find themselves in a position where they can benefit from all that the worldwide web has to offer.

Volunteers are needed to help teach very basic computer programmes like Word and Excel, however, if you are also able to develop databases and assist with any maintenance work your help will be much appreciated. This IT Project is suited to volunteers of all abilities; you don't need to be a computer whiz to be helpful.

Voluntary Work in IT Centres Teaching Computer Skills with Projects Abroad

Volunteer on the Community IT placement

Based in a tiny village on the coast near Wadduwa in the rural setting of Mawala, volunteers work in an IT centre set up by Projects Abroad. Children come from miles around to take classes on the course we have established there. We have recently converted two bedrooms at the centre into an English Classroom and a small IT-tuition room with five more computers.

Volunteering Abroad on an IT Project in Sri Lanka

Many people in this part of Sri Lanka have never used a computer before and helping them become computer-literate is invaluable for their future education and job prospects. Volunteers who wish to help in the IT centre should have a reasonable working knowledge of the main Microsoft packages - but you don't need to be an expert since it is just the basics that you'll be teaching most of the time.

Volunteer presenting an IT certificate

Volunteers are required to teach a variety of computer skills ranging from how to switch a computer on and off and explaining what a 'mouse' does, to explaining software such as Word, Excel, Powerpoint and how to use the Internet for research and communication. Children can also have fun with some educational games and receive a certificate when they complete the course.

There is a set course to follow and you will benefit from the help of an English and Singhalese-speaking local who has done the course. The help of volunteers on the IT project is always greatly appreciated; computers are a hugely useful resource and being able to use one is a great advantage.

The IT Project is available for two weeks if you don't have time to join us for a month or more. This project has been selected by our local colleagues as being suitable for short term volunteering for both the host community and the volunteer. Although you will gain a valuable cultural insight and work intensely within the local community please be aware that you may not be able to make the same impact as someone volunteering for a longer period.

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