Thank you to everyone who donated and shared our campaign and thank you to the Champions and Pledgers that provided the match funding.
Thanks to the generosity of our wonderful supporters we are delighted to say, that not only did we meet our Big Give Christmas target, we smashed it! Our target was £15,760 and we raised an incredible £17,370 – with the Gift Aid added the grand total is £18,117.
Thank you to everyone who donated and shared our campaign and thank you to the Champions and Pledgers that provided the match funding.
We are extremely grateful for your donations; your contribution means that we will be able to upskill more than 200 young students, giving them practical IT skills they can use to improve their education and their lives after they leave school. This will have the wider effect of uplifting their families and communities out of poverty.
From the very beginning, IT Schools Africa has always put recycling at the heart of what it does. Our environmental impact is important to us and we want to play our part in tackling climate change and embracing the low carbon economy. Each year we will report on our activities in Africa and the UK, as we work towards our ambitious plan to reduce our emissions over the next 8 years.
We started the process in 2019 with local consultant, Go Climate Positive, where we analysed what we do and how we do it. We identified where our significant carbon emissions came from and wrote an action plan to reduce and offset those emissions in line with the latest science and best practice.
Our 2019 report was used as a baseline report for this year's and future reports.
Our report for the year (ending May 2022), calculated both our carbon footprint and our carbon handprint. Our carbon footprint represents the current impact of the charity on global warming and climate change. Our carbon handprint is the total carbon savings that we have helped someone else to make, beyond the reductions we have made in our own emissions.
In the year ending May 2022 our carbon footprint was 281 tonnes, a reduction of 111 tonnes of carbon compared with 2019.
In 2019 our carbon handprint ( the amount of carbon we helped others to save ) was 61 tonnes. By 2022 we had increased this saving to 126 tonnes of carbon.
To reduce our emissions from our activities by at least 46% from our baseline of 2019, by 2030
To reduce the emissions from the use of the equipment we supply. To set a science-based target we would need to achieve at least a 28% reduction. However, we have already achieved this between 2019 and 2022, so we plan to do a feasibility study to understand what is achievable.
Our local TECH Connect Programme is bringing technology, digital participation and digital skills to those who need it most in Gloucestershire. Our programme provides equipment for charitable organisations as well as digital training and support. Recipients have been local charities, community centres, job clubs, schools, refugee groups, coding and youth clubs supporting marginalised and disabled groups.
Last year we gave 5,100 learners access to digital skills and services.
Please read some feedback from our local TECH Connect Community:
“The laptops you donated are a really useful resource to have available to clients. They have been used in our Education Centre for basic literacy and numeracy courses as well as having been used to help clients access the internet for support with benefit claims. Several clients have also used them to make job applications and update their CV's. Thank you so much for supporting us.”
Kevin Howie, Gloucester City Mission
“The computers you donated to the Redwell Centre are being used daily by the community, young and old for applying for jobs, helping with homework, internet searching, CV writing and lots more. Thank you for donating these, they have been an invaluable resource for our centre to offer.”
Amy Stokes The Redwell Centre, Matson, Gloucester
“It’s amazing....I have been able to check my Home Seeker account and bid on new places daily. Having access to a computer has helped me act on things myself, which is great. Thanks.”
Craig, resident at YMCA Supported Housing
“I wanted to give you some feedback following your kind donation of a laptop to a local family. Mum is thrilled and has already completed
4 online sessions covering adult and children mental health and childhood trauma. Thank you once again for your support.”
Michelle Smith, Senior Coordinator Homestart Stroud and Gloucester
We want to support more people in Gloucestershire and have a long waiting list for urgent IT equipment - if your business or school can donate working IT equipment please do get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel : 01242 228800
Could you support our campaign?
We are excited to be taking part in the Big Give Christmas Challenge 2022 - for the fifth consecutive year. Last year our campaign to deliver our digital skills course to teachers in Zimbabwe was hugely successful; we reached our fundraising goal and we are well on our way to meeting our target of 200 trained teachers by the end of the year!
The Big Give Christmas Challenge 2022 launches on #GivingTuesday 29th November and for one week only every donation is doubled.
Our goal is to help 200 Malawian students over five months to gain digital and entrepreneurial skills.
"Digital learning is changing our lives as students. These programs will help us after secondary school."
Madalo Banda, Aged 19, Njamba Secondary School, Malawi
Why this matters?
With scarce computer facilities at schools, many Malawian students are unable to gain practical, ‘hands-on’ experience using digital technology. In addition, young students struggle to pay for education and many demotivated teenage girls have fallen out of education due to increased rates of pregnancies.
*49.2% of the Malawian population are under 18 and they need skills to improve their future livelihoods.*
Developing real-life skills will enable these students to generate an income improving their future livelihoods, with the wider effect of uplifting their families and communities out of poverty.
The delivery of our Entrepreneurial IT Skills Programme to teach students how to use design programmes will help develop students’ confidence using digital technology and apply it to real-life. Students will have better chances of success with internships and employment opportunities to improve income and independence.
Students will leave school confident and digitally focused to improve their future education, employment and life prospects.
"Long term benefits of the digital skills training include an income generating activity for our students."
Precious Majoni, Teacher, Zingwangwa Secondary School, Malawi
Contact email@example.com to discuss the campaign.
Save the date: Midday Tuesday 29th November to midday Tuesday 6th December 2022
Helping our local community to use technology
DigiBus is a free digital support service to help people of all ages improve their digital skills for better life and work opportunities. We are supporting a wide range of needs; from booking virtual appointments with the GP, setting up an email address, accessing online public services and an introduction to robotics and virtual reality!
We are delighted to have received 1,481 visitors since the service began and are pleased to see how people are benefitting from the DigiBus service. Our recent evaluation report provided valuable data on how learners felt after their session on the DigiBus following its first tour of Gloucestershire.
67% feel more confident using technology and learning on their own
47% say it has benefited their health and sense of wellbeing
16% say it enables them to take a more active part in the community
8% say they’ve learned skills they can use in a job
We were delighted to welcome the High Sheriff of Gloucestershire, Sir Dusty Miller KBE to visit DigiBus, to see first hand how our mobile digital inclusion project helps community members to improve their digital skills and get help with technology.
"The ITSA DigiBus - a terrific concept bringing extremely valuable learning opportunities to members of the more dispersed communities, dispelling uncertainty, promoting communication and reducing isolation."
Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller KBE
Huge congratulations to Precious Majoni on receiving the Best Computer Studies Teacher Award for 2021 presented by the Ministry of Education (South West Education Division) in Malawi.
Precious is an IT Teacher at Zingwangwa Secondary School, a partner school in Blantyre, Malawi. IT Schools Africa donated two school IT labs in 2014/2015 and more recently started an Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course for students through our local partner Computers For Malawian Schools (CFMS).
IT Schools Africa has been instrumental in helping Precious achieve his award and improving digital education at the school. We recently caught up with Precious to find out more about this prestigious award and what it means to him and the wider school community.
“I am so proud to win this award because we were competing against very good schools and I have overcome a lot of challenges. My students and fellow teachers have renewed energy and motivation and will never look down on themselves again.“
Precious Majoni, IT teacher, Zingwangwa School, Blantyre, Malawi
Question: Please tell us a little more about the award you received?
I was awarded the Best Subject Teacher Award 2021 for Computer Studies, presented by the Ministry of Education (South West Education Division) in Malawi. In addition to teaching the curriculum-based course focussing on the Microsoft applications, this award was in recognition of achieving the best Malawi School Certificate of Education (MCSE) results in computer studies that the school has ever produced.
Furthermore, the new Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course incorporating Microsoft Publisher, Adobe Photoshop and video editing, developed and implemented with local partner Computers For Malawian Schools (CFMS) and IT Schools Africa (ITSA), is transforming digital skills education. This course is quite unique for Malawian schools and teaches real life, useful skills enabling these students to generate an income and improve their lives.
Tell us a little more about IT teaching in school and how learning digital skills helps students.
ICT is a compulsory subject up to the age of 14 and is optional for older students. IT is a game changer for students’ education, supporting learning across all subjects and accessing global information. Developing digital skills has enabled the students to increase their chances for internship, employment and access to university.
Could you share more details on your new Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course?
There is a demand for digital design skills such as Publisher, Photoshop and Premier Pro in Malawi. These skills enable the students to generate income and help their families financially. We are seeing higher enrolment for computer studies, more engagement from students and new energy in teaching amongst the teachers. Our first cohort of 48 students last year benefitted so much we are repeating the course now for a further 70 students. We have also worked with local companies, such as Hallmark to ensure the modules are covering all areas that are marketable in the industry.
How much does schooling cost in Malawi?
Primary education is free in Malawi but secondary schooling has to be paid for. Students’ families have to pay MWK 33,000 per year (which converts to approximately £30 per year), sadly many families struggle to pay school fees.
How do you handle the challenges of internet and power?
We do our best under the circumstances. We do not have access to regular internet but we manage. In case of a blackout, I always prepare two sets of lessons, I can teach a theory lesson if this happens.
Thank you Precious - you are an inspiration to your fellow teachers and students!
Huge congratulations to our very own Monis Khalifa!
Monis was invited to attend the Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace last month, with our GM Lucy Pollock, in recognition of his work at
IT Schools Africa (ITSA). Monis has been with ITSA since its very beginning. He is not just a very well recognised face with our volunteers, but has been the heart of the charity over the last 17 years.
The seed for IT Schools Africa was sown when an old computer was thrown into a skip - watched by Monis - he thought to himself, is there not a better way to recycle old computers? He mentioned this to his friend Michael Ratcliffe, and between the two of them, they decided that there definitely was a better way - to send them to schools in Africa!
Subsequently IT Schools Africa was established in 2004 and operations started the following year, with the renovation of a warehouse in Cheltenham and from there the first refurbished computers were shipped in a container to Africa. The rest, as they say is history!
“When I first started the charity, I thought it was just about sending computers to schools in Africa so that school children could benefit and have the opportunities that IT can give. It has been so much more than that. I have learnt so much from our wonderful volunteers and I have seen them grow in confidence and self-esteem which is so rewarding – I am truly grateful to them. It is thanks to our wonderful, selfless volunteers who have allowed us to achieve so much.”
Monis Khalifa – IT Manager, IT Schools Africa
We are pleased to share the IT Schools Africa Annual Review 2020-2021 showcasing our work and impact in Africa and the UK.
“Despite the extraordinary challenges of operating during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, IT Schools Africa (ITSA) continued to successfully support its programmes in Africa and the UK, its focus, as always, to transform lives by improving digital access.”
Lucy Pollock General Manager
Our year in numbers - Africa
Our programmes in Africa help to improve the teaching of digital training for teachers and the skills and experience of students learning ICT at school. We are proud to have positively impacted so many students through digital education to enable life opportunities.
Our year in numbers - UK
Our work in the UK, specifically in Gloucestershire, to improve digital access and skills locally has been very successful. Working with Cheltenham Borough Council and GCHQ, ITSA supported their No Child Left Behind campaign to supply laptops to primary and secondary schools to ensure pupils had access to a computer for home study.
Read the full Annual Review here
Would your business or school like to partner with us?
Please email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Helping our local community to use technology
DigiBus is our digital inclusion project that's helping people of all ages improve their digital skills for better life and work opportunities. The DigiBus ‘mobile learning experience’ is a converted double-decker bus, packed with digital technology, travelling around the whole of Gloucestershire, as it visits community venues and town centres providing free digital support and workshops.
We are pleased to see increasing numbers of learners benefiting from DigiBus; over 650 visitors have now benefited from the service and had help to improve their digital skills since the DigiBus began. We are supporting a wide range of needs; from booking virtual appointments with the GP, setting up an email address, accessing online public services and an introduction to robotics and virtual reality!
“An elderly gentleman, 96 year old ‘Tom’ came to the DigiBus to learn how to use his Smart Phone. Many years ago Tom was responsible for placing the first computers into schools in Gloucestershire. Today, after his visit to the DigiBus Tom is not only mastering his phone, but he knows all about what is involved in programming miniature robots, along with what VR (Virtual Reality) goggles can do. A huge leap in learning!”
Taff, DigiBus Project Manager
DigiBus is currently visiting Gloucester and heading to Dursley, Chalford and Stroud community venues in April. Then it will begin its second tour of the county and returning to the Forest of Dean.
Our DigiBus IT trainers and volunteers are providing personalised one-to-one sessions helping people with technology. Learning how to order prescriptions, setting up mobile banking apps and finding out how to use social networks to ease isolation are just some of the many things we can help with. Learners can book a one-to-one session with the IT trainer or alternatively anyone can drop in between 10.00am and 3.00pm.
Please get in touch if you would like to host DigiBus at your community centre, volunteer on DigiBus, partner with DigiBus or find out more, we want to hear from you!
Please email email@example.com
Our Teacher Training Programme is helping to improve the quality of digital education throughout schools in Zambia. The training course is designed to improve teachers’ digital skills proficiency and students' learning. Despite many challenges, including teacher strikes and further Covid-related school closures, we are delighted to have successfully trained over 220 teachers in Zambia since the beginning of 2021.
The training will help both ICT and non-ICT teachers as it provides an in-depth practical study of computers and how to use them effectively. We want to ensure teachers within all subject areas are able to promote and encourage students to use technology, as well as making lessons more fun and interactive!
“It helped me enhance my skills in using ICT's in our school. Through this training my confidence has grown” Teacher, Chiawa, Lusaka Province
“I learnt skills about how to use the computer correctly and effectively, and how helpful the computer is in our daily lives. Furthermore, I gained skills about how to use Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint presentations.” Teacher, Kitwe, Copperbelt Province
If your school or business would like to support our teacher training project please get in touch. Email firstname.lastname@example.org