Open Source goes to Cape Town

Subject: Cases and Cooling | September 28, 2006 - 11:55 AM |

The VIA pc-1 is a client and server set up, running a flavour of Ubuntu Linux which lets youth in Cape Town program Open Source applications, under the tutelage of University students.  The idea is to enable them to produce software that is usable in their lives, as well as giving them a lot of knowledge in the basics of programming.

"Khayelitsha is a township on the outskirts of Cape Town, South Africa. Although it does have a relatively reliable city grid power supply

and basic infrastructure, the area is burdened with massive poverty and an unemployment rate of over 50%. A quarter of the population

suffers from HIV and many of its inhabitants are still living in shacks and are without power. One of the greatest contributors to these

issues is, of course, lack of education. As is often the case, issues of poverty, poor education and health are entangled in a self-feeding

'catch 22' cycle that can be difficult — but not impossible — to break.

IkamvaYouth strongly believes that positive change is indeed possible, even with only limited resources available. Passion and determination

are the key ingredients to their continuing success. The VIA pc-1 equipped IkamvaYouth tuXlab IT center at the Nazeema Isaacs Library in

Khayelitsha is one of their more recent projects, and is a fitting example of the kind of success they are achieving."

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