Tonga.Online Stakeholder Update June 09

1.0     Introduction

In the month of June, continued providing support services to different ITCs with a view of bringing them to desired standards after a long down time period resulting from the collapse of the education sector. Four schools got their compiters serviced. Basic computers maintenance skills were imparted to teachers and distribution on information was done. On the cultural front, the Matabeleland North Arts and cultural festival was celebrated.
2.0    Matabeleland North Arts and Culture Festival.

The festival was held on the 12th of June 2009. It was attended by six districts namely Nkayi, Tsholotsho, Hwange, Bubi, Umguza and the hosting Binga. Various arts and cultural activities portraying different cultures practised in Matabeland North were performed under the theme 'Youth and Culture'. There was splendid performance of Ngoma yabuntibe from Mucheni Primary School youth group. This youth group formed the foundation on which campaign for inclusion of youth in Ngoma yabuntibe could be based on. Tonga.Online assisted with transport, fuel and the Public Address (P.A) systems during the day.

3.0    Review of Lake Kariba Combination Master Plan.

As part of networking, Tonga.Online attended the workshop reviewing the Lake Kariba Combination Master Plan review workshop, organised by Basilwizi from the 23rd  to 24th of June 2009. The Lake Kariba Combination Master is a document which coordinate and rationalised development in the Lake Kariba area. The workshop was designed among other things to evaluate the progress on the plan, identify  legal implications of the plan and map the wayforward.

4.0    eBooks.

Tonga. Online received 609 eBooks (Electronic Books). These valuable resources were donated by Project Gutenberg in the form of CDs and DVDs. Project Gutenberg is one of the oldest all-electronic information providers on the Internet, based in USA, and committed to producing freely available literature in multiple formats and languages. The books were distributed to all ITCs and workshops to share experiences on how teachers, communities and school libraries can benefit from these resources will be carried.

5.0    Mantainance of I.T.Cs

Three schools got their computers serviced during the month of June, 2009. It was osberved that a 35% of the computers in these schools were defunct due varied reasons. Schools need take great care of the ICT infrastructure if the development of ICT was to be meaningfully realised in the district.

Coupling the servicing of ICT infrastructure was the training of teachers in computer basic maintenance and on how to install and administer the Ubuntu 9.04 software. Nine teachers benefitted from the training in that is four from Sianzyundu seecondary and five from  Lusulu High Schools. Experiences were also shared on how teachers and school children can benefit from the Gender & HIV, Food & Nutrition databases installed.

6.1    Restoration of Electricity at Manjolo Primary School ITCs

Electricity at Manjolo Primary School was finally restored on the 5th of June 2009,  after a prolonged down time period due lack of transport on the part of Zimbabwe Electricity Distribution Company to attend to the Electrical faults. Tonga Online came to their rescue and provided transport.
ZEDC officers at work.

7.2    Printer.
The Manjolo ITC received a donation of a printer. The ITC operated without a printer for a long time. The donation was made by Pottar Muzamba, the Director of Tonga Online and family. The Printer a LaserJet HP1018 was installed by Tonga online. “....both the school and the community will benefit from the gesture…” the school head remarked.

8.    Lubimbi Clinic Plans to Share Solar Power with Schools

Lubimbi Secondary School still does not have electricity. Nearby Lubimbi Clinic has a good solar plant installed by the Rural Electrification Agency of Zimbabwe. Tonga Online negotiated with the Clinic staff for the school to be allowed to use their solar power to connect their computers to the power in an empty room at the clinic. Discussions on a policy that could be in place were currently taking place.

The School (Lubimbi) lost a computer through a burglary that happened at the school. This reduced the number of computers they have from ten to nine. The matter was reported to the police and investigations are going on.

P. Muzamba
Project Director