British grant for Joynagar e-learning project
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The project has been undertaken by local NGO Pragati Sangha of Dara with financial assistance from the British Deputy High Commission.
British Deputy High Commissioner Kolkata, Scott Furssedonn-Wood inaugurated an e-learning resource centre for women at Dara village in Block II of Joynagar, which is part of the Sunderbans in South 24 Parganas, 16 December 2014.
The centre will be the focus of an e-literacy programme in the Mayahawri Anchal of the Sunderbans which aims to build awareness about computer literacy and online resources and provide a six-month hands-on training programme to beneficiaries. Of the total project cost of Rs 7.2 lakhs, the BDHC gave a grant of Rs 5.20 lakhs.
Scott Furssedonn-Wood inaugurated the centre and toured the project area discussing the programme with beneficiaries and local residents. Speaking at a function organised by the local residents, Scott Furssedonn-Wood emphasised that computer literacy was becoming as important as literacy itself as the world becomes more and more dependent on computers, technology and the internet. He hoped that the e-literacy movement in the area and access to the computer learning centre would skill-up local people and equip them with essential skills for life and the workplace.
Pragati Sangha has been active in the Mayahawri Anchal for many years and have in the past implemented livelihood projects with support from the British Deputy High Commission. The area has traditionally been backward due to poverty, illiteracy, and the lack of minimum infrastructural facilities. With the arrival of electricity in late 2012, the area started to live beyond sunlight hours. However, it was not until early 2014 that electricity supply stabilised though the area suffers from frequent load-shedding. With access to power, Pragati Sangha wanted to usher in e-literacy and learning in the area as a part of its women empowerment activity.
The project is creating a support base to educate and train marginalised people about the use of new technology for their social upliftment and realising their rights & privileges. While the NGO will cover all 12 villages under Mayahawri Anchal, it has started with the six villages of Dara, Gazir Dhal, Jadukhali, Bapulir Chawk, Khejurtala and Ghoshaler Chawk. The project, started in August 2014, has made good progress with Pragati Sangha setting up the e-learning resource centre with five personal computers with necessary software, voltage stabilizer, generator back-up, printer-cum-scanner and infrastructure facility. Till end-November, Pragati Sangha has held 11 awareness camps involving 640 local women; 127 people have signed up for training.
For further details please contact:
Press & Public Affairs Department
British Deputy High Commission,
1A Ho Chi Minh Sarani, Kolkata-700 071
Phone: 2288-5172/76, 98300-70623