Major Milestones Reached At The Lusaka IT Training Center
During a recent trip to Lusaka in early March 2016, we saw the vision of a working IT training facility come fully to life. Several volunteers worked over a series of days to bring several pieces online as well as spent several hours training the staff and faculty of African Vision of Hope.The staff was trained on how the network was put together, the security controls and monitoring solutions, as well as how to build computers and troubleshoot/repair computer issues.
The current training center has 15 operational workstations. These workstations can access essential business tools such as the Microsoft Office suite as well as collaborative cloud based tools such as the Google Apps for Non-profits. This center is being used by the staff of African Vision of Hope as well as a training and testing center by the AVOH students as a portion of the official Zambian Secondary Education (High School Level).
The IT Training Center is just the latest in additional spokes that support and add to our education program. As often is the case when launching into new territory and initiatives the “real world” challenges can quickly surface opportunities for improvement. Rolling blackouts are a constant part of life in Sub Saharan Africa. As any of us that use computers know – unplanned power outages can play havoc on the best of computers. To accommodate this we have moved to a model where all of the computing is contained on a central server which is powered by a battery backup.
The next obstacle that is quickly being recognized is space and ambient air temperature. 15 workstations with Monitors, Keyboards, Mice, along with 15 students, trainers, and chairs can really fill up a room! When you take into consideration of the average ambient temperature found in Lusaka, mix in 15-17 people in a small space, then add on top of that 15 standard computers all “cranking” out additional noise and heat, it makes for some “warm” conditions.
We Have A Solution!
These conditions are perfect for a tiny little computer that would fit in the palm of your hand. The computer is called a Raspberry Pi. These little wonders will work perfectly for our conditions. They will benefit the training center by
- Requiring much less space
- Generating no heat
- Generating no noise
To benefit the entire program we need to purchase 15 Pi’s, add additional memory to the server, as well as upgrade the processor on the server. We need your help in raising the $1400 necessary to complete all of these changes.
We have created a “Go Fund Me” project where you can help be a part of bringing this needed technology into our IT Training Center. I guess you could say we’ve made giving to this as easy as Pi…