Technology for 200 Schools in Developing Countries
By MacFarlane Okonta | CEO
Meeting the specific standards and needs of our projects is the most important goal for us at the Victoria House Foundation (VHF). In an effort to make sure the devices and Internet access at the various schools are up and running, our technology refresh program will be in effect starting from January 2023 all through December 2024. With VHF’s technology refresh program, we repair or replace broken devices including Internet modems and subscriptions. We have donated over 2000 computers and other peripherals to over 30 schools since our inception.
With effective teamwork, we put together a plan that will significantly help speed up our various projects making sure the use of the technological devices donated to the schools are maximized. Our highly effective projects are producing substantial impact in the quality of lives in many of the students. Recently, in September 2021, a periodic report received from Sudbury All Age & Infant School has shown that students use the tablets donated by VHF for research purposes in class, to complete live worksheets, watch educational videos and to work on mathematical concepts. The tablets were very instrumental in the student’s preparation for Primary Exit Profile Exam, which helped their admission to secondary school this Fall of 2022.
All beneficiaries are on their way to greatness because of our donation! Even teachers and administrators who are barely computer literate are attracted to the prepackaged, computer-based learning systems that VHF made possible for them to have access to, which enables them to track student progress on basic skills or assign specific tasks to particular students.
VHF Donation of Tablets and Laptops to Public Schools in Jamaica
By MacFarlane Okonta | Project Leader
Our effort to Advance Education through Technology in public schools has consistently shown sustained and improved student growth. In St. James Parish Jamaica, VHF donation of tablets and laptops in October 2021 to over 150 students has tremendously influenced student’s attendance and academic performance. Students of the Sudbury All Age & Infant School would have been unable to attend and participate in online classes as well as complete assignments because they had no access to devices.
Since the donation of these tablets, student’s attendance and class participation has been consistent. Here is an example of the impact of our donation to two students who were beneficiaries. Omarion is a very focused student who has been performing extremely well the past two terms since he received his new tablet. He seldom miss classes and completed his assignments when classes were still online. The school recently opened for full in person classes since April 2021 and the devices are still used for online activities that are posted in the google classroom. In addition, students use the tablets for research purposes in class, to complete live worksheets, watch educational videos and to work on mathematical concepts. Omarion has shown great improvement in his academic performance and he is quite proactive in researching to enhance his understanding of the various lessons.
Trisalee is a Grade 6 student who had great difficulty accessing classes and completing her assignments. However, after receiving a tablet there has being major improvement in her attendance and completion of assignments. Additionally, she used the tablet to do more research and worksheets to remedy the learning loss she experienced due to her minimal engagement in classes prior to receiving the device. Since then, she has been using the tablet efficiently and is on her way to success. This tablet has really been instrumental in her preparation for her Primary Exit Profile Exam which will determine the secondary school that she will attend in the Fall of 2022.
Omarion, Trisalee and the other beneficiaries are on their way to greatness because of your donation to VHF!
Access to the Internet and computers is a lifeline for students now more than ever. Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted all of our lives in unprecedented ways, and made existing inequalities widen. One of those disparities is the digital divide. The digital divide describes the gap between those who have Internet access and computers/tablets, and those who do not.
In St. James Parish, Jamaica, laptops and tablets were not within the budget of underserved communities. As a result, only 10% of students in the Adelphi community have access to devices to connect online and participate in school work. Students were participating in school work on borrowed family cell phones. During a pandemic, digital resources provide students with more than just the ability to attend school. Access to digital devices connects us to other human beings, and has become a necessary resource to maintain relationships during a time when we are all forced to be apart.
It has become even more pertinent to keep children in school connected and supported. The Victoria House Foundation and Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities, in a joint effort, on Friday October 16, 2021 donated some 131 tablets and 26 laptop computers to students across Adelphi community in St. James parish. As of today, over 80% of students in Adelphi community have been equipped with laptop or tablets computer, and 98% of the students have returned for the 2021-2022 school year.
.Mayor of Montego Bay and Chairman of the St James Municipal Corporation, Councillor Leeroy Williams, thanked both organization for the donation calling it “timely” and a “kind gesture that highlights the philanthropic track record of its dedication to the citizenry of the parish.
“I am positive that this donation will bolster learning by empowering the recipients to better interact within the virtual learning space,” said Mayor Williams. At the same time, he is urging the students to “show utmost gratitude by caring for the devices and excel in all educational endeavours.”
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Corporation's Civic and Community Affairs Committee, Councillor Dwight Crawford, who was in attendance at the presentation ceremony, said that “through this uplifting initiative, world leaders are being created.”
He said that he “fully endorses” the joint mission by the Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee and Victoria House Foundation to advance education through technology in public schools within Montego Bay and its environs.
“Words can't explain how happy I feel, I am overwhelmed. I am so thankful and I am sure this will help me to do even better inschool,” said a smiling Tricialee Chin of Sadbury All Age school.
The benefitting schools from this year's donations are: Adelphi Primary, Adelphi Garden Basic, Goodwill Primary, Sudbury All age, Barrett Town All age, Dumfries Primary, Buckingham Primary, Muschett High, Anchovy High, Watson Town Basic, Bethtephil Basic,The University of the West Indies, Cornwall College, Farm Primary and Junior High, Providence Heights Infant.
Chair of the Atlanta Chapter of the Sister Cities Committee, Dr Yvonne Smith, and Chair of the Montego Bay Chapter of the Cities Committee, Fred Smith, as well as the Systems Engineer and CEO of Victoria House Foundation, McFarlane Okonta, were in attendance at the presentation ceremony. Also on hand to distribute the devices was Member of Parliament for Eastern St James and Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett.
Many thanks to our donors and partners! Without your support, this would not have been possible. Special thanks to Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee for their unwavering commitment and partnership with VHF to help Advance Education through Technology in Developing countries and Inner Cities of the United States.
Project reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you can recieve an email when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports without donating.