IT Centre for underprivileged children

At no-fault of their own, children born in underprivileged homes have to deal with various situations as a result of a hard-up environment. They are deprived of every right as children and human, whether it is education or a well-balanced diet. Moreover, they are liable to be exploited, abused and often even denied the joys of childhood.

In this respect, organisations have been working to provide such children a better life, and perhaps a better future. CONCERN Nepal, a non-governmental organisation, established in 1993, has also been making a significant contribution to society by preventing deprived children from ending up on the streets.

In this day and age, where information technology dominates the scene, people have a hard time finding a reputable job opportunity without computer skills. Considering this, CONCERN has been operating an Information Technology and Computer Training Centre for the past eight months.

Children, under the age of 16 who have had at least a primary education, receive a two-month crash course about computers. While the training centre has also been providing classes to interested children from privileged backgrounds at a minimal cost, it also offers classes for poor children, free of charge.

To date, the centre has provided training for 12 children who had been referred to them by other organisations, seven child porters, six child domestics, 15 underprivileged school-going children and 16 children from well off backgrounds.

The centre provides training on windows packages, desktop publishing, e-mail and Internet programmes. In addition, the centre also occasionally runs international language classes for interested participants. However, they have not been getting much support from other organisations working for children.

“We believe that Information Technology is a part of any educational scheme, especially in this day and age,” co-ordinator of CONCERN Nepal Bijay Sainju said. “We haven’t had much of a positive response from other organisations, but if we obtain success with the training centre here, we are considering opening cyber cafés in districts that have electricity to provide a medium of communication for rural people via e-mail.”

Though the training centre does not offer a job guarantee to trainees, the organisation believes that it, at least, enhances their prospect of finding better jobs in the future.