The digital divide is very real in remote parts of Nepal. About 50% of the population is illiterate and, given the pressure of poverty, there is a high drop-out rate from schools. Even those who stay in school might not emerge with an ideal education as infrastructure and equipment is often insufficient.

Meanwhile, Microsoft told us they were interested in helping people in need. “We were just looking for an opportunity to allow our team to give back in some way to one of the global communities we serve,” they wrote. They came out to Crossroads and took part in our poverty x-perience, the Struggle for Survival, along with a massive volunteering team-build. Following that, they assisted with our shipments, gave Crossroads exceedingly generous software provision and then began discussions about helping people cross the digital divide.

“Our computer lab is really becoming fruitful for students of class 4-8. It’s being nearly 1 year but we can’t express the outcome in words.” School principal to Microsoft.

The result? Microsoft, through a partner group, New Zealand nonprofit, Global Equity Brokers. donated hardware, software and expertise to children in a remote part of Nepal. They gave a fully equipped computer lab, with twenty computers and the needed software. They also sent six members of staff to install it and train the students. This equipped the laboratory to provide 1500 computer training slots for students each week, enabling many to cross the digital divide.

We often say that, in this work, we love to be as our name suggests: a crossroads between people in need and those who can help.

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The United Nations’ Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, tells a poignant story of his childhood. “I grew up in a society ravaged by war and mired in poverty. Schools had been destroyed. My classes were held in the open under a tree. We had no desks, chairs or other basic necessities. The Republic of Korea was on its knees, but education enabled the country to stand tall again.”

“Even in the worst circumstances, education helps to give children confidence to face the future… I want every child, without exception, to have the same opportunity that I had. The power of education to transform lives is universal.”

In 2012, Ban Ki-moon called together a coalition of UN personnel, NGOs, politicians and corporations to fight together for the educational needs of the planet. The UN approached our Global Hand team, asking if we could  support this by tailoring the software we developed for business.un.org so that all these groups could make formally commit to seeing education reach children around the world.

Syria: Aid and empowerment for refugees

Shipment Feedback: The conflict in Syria continues to devastate lives and communities, with thousands of people still displaced and living in flimsy...

read more ...

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How to get to the Good Gift Fair at Crossroads Village Free shuttle bus: Free shuttle buses to the Good Gift Fair will...

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WHO IS THIS SHIPMENT HELPING? In rural Tanzania, poverty is widespread and affects every area of life. Sadly, the nation is still...

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WHO IS THIS SHIPMENT HELPING? Despite making great strides economically over the past decade, Malawi remains one of the poorest countries in...

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