“Okay, now you click that button and it minimizes the page on the screen…. And the “x” makes the page go away.”
These were the words I heard the instructor say as I walked into the computer class that he was teaching our Sseko ladies. I snickered a little to myself because the concept seemed so simple. But then I remembered that some of these girls have never touched a computer before in their lives.
That’s why we organized a computer training class for them. Last Saturday, seven of our women attended our very first course in basic computer skills. They learned things like how to use a mouse, where to place you fingers on the keyboard when you type, and how to create new folders. The opportunity to spend a day with a computer is a big step in and of itself. But like most things in life, a day (A long day! Our computer class was seven hours long! These ladies are TROOPERS!) is not enough to make a dent on the steep learning curve that is technology.
With the global economy today, we realize the importance of equipping the Sseko Squad with the skills that will help give them an edge on the competition once they leave the Sseko workshop, so we wanted to develop an on-going effort so that these ladies will not only be sandal-making ninjas, but computer ninjas too!
At the Sseko workshop, we now offer typing lessons two days a week after work. The girls come in two at a time and spend about an hour going through basic typing exercises. They learn which fingers reach for which letters and how to look at the screen instead of the keyboard as they type. This may sound simple, but for university-bound girls who have many papers to write in their future, being able to type quickly and accurately is an incredibly valuable skill and such a time-saver!
I remember my typing class days. 7th grade. Mrs. Groves. And I DREADED it. But not these ladies, they put me to shame with their commitment and enthusiasm for learning. Susan and Monica were our first pupils and we saw great improvements in speed and accuracy even on the first lesson.
Soon, they will hack into and take over this very blog.
And then probably the world.