Volunteers from Urban Life Church are working hard in the heart of Olievenhoutbosch on Saturday afternoons, to add value and to restore justice. Generous justice can take on many different forms and in this case it happens to be in the form of training and imparting valuable knowledge.
It takes place in the assembly hall of the Olievenhoutbosch community centre where a handful of volunteers provide free computer training for the men and women who live in the surrounding areas.
In this day and age of technology, having basic computer skills can make a huge difference in obtaining a job, furthering education, and interacting with the world around us.
We decided to do this training because we saw a desperate need in our church community. The capacity to be resourceful, adaptable and flexible amidst change and ambiguity is imperative to help young and old people today to cope with all the changing trends. We noted that a number of the ULC church members lacked computer skills and most did not have the resources to attain these skills.
We then ran a survey to see what kind of training people were interested in and also how many people would like to be part of the computer-specific training. The response was overwhelming! We found that over 70% of people do not have access to a computer apart from going to Internet Cafes.
The training students’ ages range from 14 to 60 years of age so some of the students have not finished high school yet while others are grandparents already! We felt in our hearts that this training was something that God called us to do. We had the skills and the passion so we simply prayed that God would provide us with the necessary resources to do what was needed… and He did, enough to get us started.
We want to empower the people of Olieven to reach their full potential. The course started with the very fundamentals of operating a computer, basic text input, how to name a file and create a folder, etc.
Even with only one training session under their belt and only a few basic skills learnt, these trainees experienced a massive confidence boost when they realised what they were capable of doing – they were empowered!
It is our hope to get people more comfortable with a computer. This will allow them the ability to add value to their own lives by making a quality CV, for example or to do research on the web. They will also gain the confidence to try, practice, and grow in their new skills as they become more familiar with a computer. We also aim to teach the people how they can best use the Internet to not only to search for jobs but to also advertise their businesses.
We would love for more people to get involved in this so here are a few ways you can help:
- Become a trainer or assist with training
- Donation of computers for training and students
- Bursary to attend formal accredited training
- Provide mentoring services
- Provide Reading Material
We are very excited to see this project grow and add value to people’s lives!