5 May 2023
Gemfields Foundation donates new computers to local school
Gemfields Foundation has gifted 20 new, state-of-the-art computers to a secondary school close to the emerald mine in Lufwanyama, with the aim of enhancing digital literacy and developing pupils’ ICT skills.
The Chapula Secondary School will now be able to expand its computer studies curriculum, thanks to the new 20 Raspberry Pi computers funded by Gemfields Foundation – the charitable arm of Gemfields, which allows donors to directly support projects to help local communities in areas around its gemstone mines in Africa. Kagem also supported the initiative by providing internet access.
Kagem Emerald Mine, believed to be the world’s largest-producing emerald mine, is owned in a model partnership between Gemfields and the Zambian government. Gemfields takes seriously its commitment to enhancing quality of life for citizens in the area around the mine, and education is a key area of focus. Raspberry Pi computers are known for their user-friendly interface and will enable pupils of all ages to become comfortable with technology.
A Senior Manager for Corporate Affairs at Kagem sums up the importance of this investment: “Lufwanyama is facing many challenges, among them low levels of digital literacy. In an increasingly technological world, it is important that people from rural areas are well-versed in modern technologies and understand how to use them to make their lives easier.”
The school will now be able to launch computer programming classes that will give pupils the tools to succeed in the jobs of the future. “Upon completion of their studies, a variety of careers in ICT fields will be open to graduates. They might work as coders, run internet cafes or do computer maintenance,” said Chapula’s head of IT, Aaron Sikwese, adding that the school will introduce an ICT club along with ICT competitions and fairs to build enthusiasm.
Chapula Secondary School was built with funding from Kagem in 2017 and the mine remains committed to supporting its expansion and development. The Gemfields Foundation also supported the construction of a computer lab at Montepuez Secondary School in Mozambique last November.