For many for whom pen on paper is the most formalised way of communication they know, the avalanche of tech terms in the world of computers is simply (or not so simply) daunting. The ten ladies from the staff of The Domino Foundation who are in the middle of their three-month adventure into the world of querty boards, UBs and mouses (surely that should be mice?), are on a journey into IT-savvy. The computer-literacy course, which is being facilitated by The Clothing Bank, and was developed in collaboration with non-profit training and skills organisation, Enza Empowering Women, includes an introduction to computers, MS Office skills, email and internet. Jane Naude of The Clothing Bank’s Umbilo Road, Berea-based Durban offices says, “It is critical for everyone to have computer skill. They open so many opportunities and make effective communication possible in today’s technology-centric world. We are working in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Number 5 which aims at women and girls being empowered to take control of their lives by giving them skills to compete in the job market. With computer skills in hand, they also gain a sense of confidence that they have a worthwhile contribution to make to their families and to their communities”.
Zanele Nzimakwe, who leads Domino’s ECD team, is one of four on the course from her own team, with the others being members of the Nutrition and Life Skills team and the Babies’ Home programme’s staff. She commented that her ability to use her laptop was previously very basic. ”Now, I understand so much more of what I can do with this machine…I feel free! And, when things go wrong, I don’t have to run to our IT man for help!”
At the end of the course, the bevy of eager computer-literate ladies will receive certificates proving they are ready to launch into the world of spread-sheets, search-engine navigation, word-processing, and computer security and privacy.