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February 2, 2011
Department of Social Work, Coimbatore
In today’s digital world, computer illiteracy is an overwhelming hindrance to many.
Scarcity of computers in rural homes of Kerala and Tamil Nadu may lead one to believe that students in these villages have a slim chance at improving their computer skills.
But not any longer. Amrita Village Resource Centers in many villages in South India are providing an opportunity to young students to learn and practice on computers, without charging them any fees.
Many older men and women benefit as well, as these Resource Centers bring provide useful supplements and knowledge for agriculture and vocational trades.
The Amrita Department of Social Work at Coimbatore recently began a class offering free computer training to rural school students of Standards VI – XII at the Ettimadai Village Resource Center.
Located close to the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border, the village of Ettimadai is also the location for Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham’s Coimbatore Campus.
The computer classes were inaugurated on January 19 by Br. Shraddhamrita Chaitanya in the presence of Sri. A. Shanmugam, Vice President of Ettimadai Town Panchayat.
In his inaugural address, Br. Shraddhamrita emphasized the importance of computers in everyday life and the benefits of total computer literacy in all segments of society.
“Nowadays computers have invaded almost all fields; therefore computer literacy assumes paramount importance to people of all walks of life,” he stated. “Teaching computer skills to children in school will motivate them to reach a higher level.”
“I am very glad to inaugurate this computer literacy program for the benefit of all children residing in the Ettimadai area,” he added.
Over 100 students had already signed up for the free classes. Classes will be conducted in several batches in the evenings during weekdays, and in the daytime on weekends.
Inaugurated by the former President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam in 2005, the VRC network now includes nine rural centers in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
Aiming to enrich the lives of India’s rural citizenry by providing connectivity, the VRCs provide information services in the areas of education, health, nutrition, weather, environment, agriculture and alternative livelihoods.
Spearheaded by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) in partnership with Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, VRCs also enjoy the support of corporate giants such as Intel, HP, Cisco, Microsoft, Cognizant Technologies, Oracle and Dhanalakshmi Bank.
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