Joachim Breitner

Kofi-Annan Center for Excellence in ICT

Published 2006-11-16 in sections English, Digital World, Ghana.

Until now, I always had to tell the not very joyful story of the motivated volunteer who came to Ghana to run against a wall of disinterest and misunderstandings. Luckily, things will change:

Yesterday, I had an appointment with the Director of the Ghana-India Kofi-Annan Center for Excellence in ICT (KACE), where I asked, with little hope, if they might make more use of me in the next weeks, until I will most likely return to Europe. To my surprise, She found that an excellent idea and immediately referred me to the techies to discuss the details. Today I saw the principal of the SOSHGIC and my current employer, trying to find out if this would be possible. She agreed that it makes more sense for me to work at KACE instead of the school, and would “lend” me to them while still being empoyed by SOSHGIC. I will be around the school a few times, to finish some reports and two more club meetings and luckily I am still allowed to live in the flat. I think I’ll spend another one or two weeks in January at KACE (as a “real” volunteer then), before I head back to my boring standard safe study life.

The first, smaller, project at KACE came up spontaniously during the meeting yesterday: I mentioned the game infon (see my last blog entry), and she was very interested in that as a programming teaching aid. My idea is now to polish it a bit, make it a bit easier to use for beginners, improve documentation, create debian packages and maybe work on some lessen plan suggestions. The author of infon, dividuum, is also quite happy about the news and the attention that his work might get now.

The other project is my idea about an internet café distribution. It happens that the team at KACE is working on a very similar thing (called “Community Information Center”) for the government, and they will start a Linux version in very few weeks, so I think I can help there as well. I expect that a lot of work for Skolelinux can be used here, so I’m looking forward to work with the DebianEDU team a bit.

I’m also looking forward to work with my future collegues at KACE. All of them qualify as geeks, in my opinion, most are Free Software advocates (or at least approvers), and the work athmosphere is very relaxed. Seven weeks of (almost) DebCamp! I’ll keep you up to date...

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