Before the Classmate PCs arrived at the school, most of the students didn’t even have text books. But with a computer on every desk, each child was equipped with everything they needed to learn, develop and get the same chances in life as every child in the developed World.
Almost every child in the school wanted to grow up to be a doctor - not for the reasons that kids want to be doctors in the West though. Wanting to be a doctor in Nigeria isn’t about having a great career, a hefty salary and the respect of those around you – it’s about wanting to make a difference in the community, it’s about wanting to give those around you a better life than you had. And the more home grown doctors, teachers and engineers that the developing world can produce, the sooner those countries will become self sufficient.
Of course I’m still cynical enough to know that big corporations partake in charitable exercises for both tax and positive PR reasons, but none of that changes the fact that Intel is in a position to make a REAL difference to the lives of children in the developing world, and for that, I have nothing but respect for everyone involved in this project.
Hopefully Intel will be able to roll out Classmate PCs to many, many schools in the developing World and make a difference to the lives of many, many children. This is a story I’m keen to stay on top of, so I’ll be badgering Intel for ongoing reports on the programme, and maybe even get to see the Classmate PCs in action first hand.