Brief Profile of E-Village Project
During last ten years Information and Computer Technologies (ICT’s) have brought a paradigm change in the ways we used to perform in our daily life. Today we are reaping the benefits of ICTs in every walk of life like Health, Education, Economic Empowerment, Governance and many more. ICT’s have provided numerous opportunities to learn rapidly, to perform better, to achieve economic empowerment with new tools and services and to benefit from the advancements and human experiences spread over the entire globe.
Statistically it has been observed that especially in developing countries mostly the male population is engaged and involved in taking the vehicle of ICTs further. Already deprived from number of legacy opportunities in the past, the vital segment of our female population still continued to be involved more in traditional jobs like fetching water, cooking meals, cleaning houses, washing clothes especially in the rural areas of the countries. The same situation is getting from bad to worst in Pakistan as our population is growing and the worst victims of digital divide are the female population living in our rural areas.
Observing the above continued situation and finding immense opportunities, a Government registered NGO since 1963, Pakistan Social Association (PSA) ( www.psa.org.pk ) has started an initiative titled as “E-Village” in the year 2009 (www.evillage.net.pk ). The basic objective of the initiative is to take the power of ICTs to rural areas of Pakistan for their economic uplift, better living conditions and to provide them timely information along with their outreach for a justice based governance system. The achievements and understanding of issues involved in the process of implementing E-Village projects in few villages around Islamabad and some other parts of Pakistan has encouraged the implementation team of E-Village to plan and propose a project for training and economically empowering 20,000 (Twenty Thousand) women in Pakistan up to 31st Dec 2015. The details of the project are available in succeeding paragraphs.
Summary of Past Achievements made by E-Village Project:
E-Village project was started in May 2009, from village Mera Bhegwal, Dist. Islamabad (30 kms away from Serena Hotel Islamabad on Simli Dam road). The same model was replicated at two other villages i.e. Charah and Bari Imam during 2011. During 2012 project was further extended to eleven different rural locations around Islamabad. Up To April 2013 total number of villages covered in different parts of Pakistan reached to 25 Villages. The salient features of past achievements are as under:
More than 2000 young boys and girls have been formally trained in these rural areas in basic computer/internet skills and most of them have now obtained employments or doing their private jobs using the skill sets in which they were trained.
Two international NGOs that are Plan international and NRSP joined hands together with E-Village project in community mobilization and training the already trained young boys and girls in other soft skills and communications skills.
E-Village now represents Pakistan in number of global initiatives on ICTs for development like Asia Pacific Telecentre network and telecenter.org USA based initiative etc. (Appreciation letter from Telecentre.org attached).
Mera Bhagwal was the first E-Village in Pakistan having Broad Band Internet provided by Nayatel Islamabad which has enabled Internet access to huge rural population of the entire area to access trainings and information resources and benefit from on-line services
Village Charah (25 km away from Islamabad) had been provided with first satellite based Broad Band Internet, and hundreds of male and female youth are getting benefit from this fast internet communication system. Future extensions of this facility like E-Health, E- Education are in progress.
Apart from continued trainings to young boys and girls in ICT skills, a large number of them are earning money through delivery of low tech jobs on internet. For this purpose their connection has been established with local and International Markets.
E-Village Project has developed its customized software to train students in areas of English learning skills, computer skills, Internet skills, how to earn money through low tech jobs on internet etc. This software is being updated and developed further by an experienced and professional team in software development.
Currently E-village Project is functional in 150 Villages of Pakistan and these villages are scattered in all provinces of Pakistan and AJK and GB
Further details and activities of the project can be made available on demand and are also available at www.Evillage.net.pk