Yayasan Salam, our partner NGO in Malaysia, recently set up a Mini Library and Community ICT Center in a small town in Batu Caves, in the outskirts of Selangor.
The two-year project funded by HSBC Malaysia aims to bridge the digital divide between the socio-economic groups in the country. Individuals who live in smaller towns and outskirts of the city, generally cannot afford to attend paid computer lessons. Without simple technology knowledge, their employment opportunities are reduced to minimum wage blue-collar worker jobs.
Over the last few months, volunteers from Yayasan Salam have taught the basics of navigating the Internet, understanding computer components, website development, video making and editing, along with walk-throughs of common office productivity suites to more than 30 individuals in the community.
Although the center was initially set up to teach computer skills to 13-18 year olds, it has since received students from various socio-economic groups, predominantly unemployed youth and single mothers who are intent on learning new computer skills. Armed with basic technology skills, these individuals be given better job opportunities and contribute to the nation’s goal in Malaysia’s Eleventh Plan of developing human capital, towards becoming an advanced nation.