By Michelle Auamoromoro
After moving to Popondetta late last year, my partner and I were a little concerned that the youths and even adults living in the community that we were in were mostly unemployed and doing nothing (no school, no work) and it seemed to be a normal to them. One of the thing they also lacked was basic computer knowledge. Since my partner owned a registered IT SME, we thought that we had to do something. When you own a business or a company, or as an organization or an institution, you have a social obligation, you have to give something back to the community. We felt that it was our social obligation to help the community by training them basic computing skills. So we put forth a Community Development Program, a Basic Computing Skills Training. When the awareness of the training went out, we had interested students who came in to register. We realized that not only youths came, there were adults who were computer illiterate and they needed the training too.
The first intake had 9 students and the training started on March 16. We planned to run the training for two weeks. Within those two weeks, we introduced them to computers, and we trained them how to use Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Publisher and Excel. With zero experience of training or teaching, I was privileged to be the Trainer. I summarized notes, prepared my presentations and trained them while trying to explain in the simplest way that I could. Most of the students were beginners. You could literally see their hands shaking as they tried to use the touchpad and it took them a minute or two to find a letter on the keyboard. After the two weeks ended, my partner and I were satisfied and happy to see the students typing with ease. We were also happy with the feedback that we received from them. Above all, we were happy that we had helped 9 people in our community to be computer literate.
Our second intake had 8 students. This intake and the first agreed to have a combined Graduation. So in April 22, 2021, we had our very first Graduation where 17 students received their certificates and references. On that day, we also officially launched our Community Development Program. I was sick and couldn’t attend the event, but I was smiling and crying tears of joy while in my sick bed. I felt the feeling of true satisfaction that day. We may be unemployed, we may not be benefiting from this training but what’s satisfying is the fact that we are helping to build this nation in a little way we can.
Being an Accountant and a Journalist by profession, we moved out of our circle and decided to give back to the community the knowledge that we have about computers. We are thankful with how the things have turned out. We look forward to helping more people. We also want to thank everyone who have supported us in one way or another. Thank you, we truly appreciate it. Above all, we thank God for everything. In the end, all glory and praise goes back to Him.
Oh, and yes, you may be wondering about what happened to the students after graduation. Well, thanks to our partner, Advance Z Computing, who has taken on board our students to do their job practical. From the response that we received from Advance Z Computing Managing Director, our students are doing great, even the beginners! And that’s good news. We smile every time the students come and find us to tell us about their job practical experience. We are so happy for them.
As for the training, it is continuing, currently, the 15 students for our Third Intake are attending the training. They will be done tomorrow.
So what did I learn through this experience? I learnt that the saying ‘You can make a change by starting where you are’ is true. And I also learned that nothing is more satisfying than giving back to your community, your province and your country in general, even in a very little way.