SVA Update: Issue 2
A Place for Computing in Development
As technology becomes smaller and more frugal, its potential for sustainable development becomes bigger and better. We’re used to laptops and tables enabling us to conveniently check out social media, celebrity news and listen to music at the drop of a hat, but SVA are hoping to use these technologies to for a different goal: education in developing countries.
The secret is the Raspberry Pi mini-computer. These tiny, innovative computers are around the size of a pack of cards and run on less energy than a light-bulb, making it ideal for SVA’s rural locations with limited resources. It can plug into old TVs via an AV lead, giving it a display and can use standard USB mice and keyboards. Raspberry Pi is the perfect solution for teaching students the basic knowledge that they would usually be unable to get without a high-cost, high-energy PC. A PC enables schools in developing countries to expand their access to up-to-date information and educational resources on the internet reducing their need for bulky paper-based libraries.
SVA’s aim is to teach basic ICT skills to schools through the use of email, Google and office software.
SVA also believe that through teaching students these basic skills they will help to achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals by empowering these schools and communities to gain awareness and information on prevalent issues such as HIV/AIDS, farming techniques, hygiene and sanitation and gender equality.
By putting something so technologically advanced, and yet simple, the idea is that SVA’s host communities will gain knowledge, not only of issues that matter to them, but of global significance.
For students and citizens in communities as diverse as Nancholi in Malawi and Siem Reap, Cambodia the Raspberry Pi can unlock an educational and informational revolution that is at once environmentally friendly and sustainable.
A better future for SVA’s host communities is, it seems, as easy as Pi.
SVA is a Scottish Registered Charity: No. SC 030081 c/o. University of Glasgow SRC, The John MacIntyre Building, University of Glasgow, GLASGOW, G12 8QQ