Wipro Partners and IDC give rural school learners access to technology

Leading global IT, consulting and business process services company Wipro has launched a three-year CSI project in partnership with South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to set up 29 computer labs across South Africa, benefiting 28,000 students from rural areas. Gavin Holme, Business Head, Wipro Africa, said the company is committed to building a sustainable economy in South Africa, and that Wipro will be providing a broad range of hardware, software, connectivity, education and programme management resources.

Holme added:

"Many rural schools in the region continue to be disadvantaged by limited levels of access to technology resources, resulting in lower levels of information and communications technology literacy among both teachers and students. Our partnership with the IDC will provide thousands of learners with the access and skills that are essential for the digital age."

The labs, which will be used primarily by students from grade 7 to 12, will be set up in 29 schools adopted by IDC in provinces across the country, though the programme will first be rolled out in the Mpumalanga, Northern Cape and Eastern Cape regions.

The programme will provide fully equipped and connected computer labs to each school, supported by a sustainable programme of computer education for approximately 800 teachers as well as school students. IDC will also appoint and train one unemployed youth from the community to help each school run its computer lab.

Zama Luthuli, IDC's Divisional Executive for Corporate Affairs, said:

"Wipro is the ideal partner for this initiative, given their extensive experience in launching education-based technology projects. Wipro's approach mirrors our own, in that both organisations are passionate about making a sustainable difference in the South African education system."