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Computer and Entrepreneurship Development Center, South Africa
 
 

Based in Johannesburg, South Africa, Youth Action Africa's computer literacy program was an initiative to provide free computer education to select citizens in South Africa.

This initiative created the foundation of the Computer and Entrepreneurship Development Center. YAA believes that information access is the underlying foundation for any successful democracy because when you deprive people of information, they become vulnerable and have limited growth. Education, therefore, plays the role of sharing information, empowering individuals with necessary tools for growth, independence and optimism.

As a pilot program, it was started in August of 2008-after the outbreak of xenophobia in May 2008 that left over 60 people dead, hundreds injured and many thousands of immigrants displaced or forced to return to their home countries. Authorities sought to identify and address the root cause of this problem. Analysis of the situation indicated that more than half of the participants involved were uneducated and unemployed.

In August 2008, under Youth Action Africa, a computer education was offered to women from refugee camps. The courses were held on Saturdays and Sundays for a period of five months from August to December 2008. This program consisted of six modules; Introduction to Computers, Windows and File Management, Microsoft Word 2003, Microsoft Excel 2003, Microsoft Power Point and Internet and Email. At the end, participants earned a certificate of completion and also were provided with employment opportunities.

Of the participants that started the program, half completed the required modules for graduation. The half that did not was faced with prohibitive challenges, such as: transportation to and from the program site; family challenges; and pregnancy.

With 50% success rate and increased awareness of the program, YAA hopes to enlist a larger number of participants and relocate to a bigger space with more equipment. They are hereby seeking more donations to better this endeavor.

 
 
 
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