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Communication and Information Sector's news service

Telecentre HelpNet AfricaWorkshop Opened in Maputo

18-09-2003 ()
Telecentre HelpNet AfricaWorkshop Opened in Maputo
Community Multimedia Centre in Manhica, Mozambique
The establishment of a helpdesk for sharing information and advice on community multimedia telecentres is on the agenda of a workshop that opened on Monday in Maputo, Mozambique. The meeting, with more than 20 participants from Ghana, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia, is organized by IDRC and the Informatics Centre of the University Eduardo Mondlane, with UNESCO's support.
There are basically three options for establishing the Telecentre HelpNet Africa discussed:

  • a centralised physically structure;

  • a decentralized organizational structure;

  • a model strengthening national levels and nets of national hubs
  • .

    Issues such as the integration of community radio stations, networks, for example Schoolnet Africa, library associations and open source groups into the Telecentre HelpNet Africa structure are also on the agenda.

    "UNESCO is pleased to support this important Telecentre HelpNet Africa initiative of practitioners" says UNESCO's Günther Cyranek in Maputo. "The community multimedia telecentre approach as a means to help developing knowledge societies is a part of our Information for All Programme."

    The objective of the Telecentre HelpNet Africa is to facilitate and catalyze the sharing and exchange of knowledge by telecentre practitioners, from the public, private and non-profit sectors. The primary target group for the HelpNet is the non-profit telecentre practitioners with a social agenda for community development. This includes rural areas as well as initiatives for establishing telecentres in deprived urban areas. The HelpNet Africa will provide the telecentres, which are concentrating on community development support in information services, capacity building, sustainability concepts, relevant technologies, and ICT policy.

    The idea for the workshop was born in April 2002 during an international consultative workshop, which was held in Paris under the auspices of UNESCO, IDRC and IICD. It brought together community ICT practitioners from Asia, Africa and Latin America to discuss the concept of a global telecentres helpdesk. The African participants in the meeting proposed support centres for creating, sharing and disseminating information, advice and experiences at national, regional and inter-continental level. The holding of an African workshop was suggested by UNESCO, and Mozambique offered to host the workshop.
    Related themes/countries

          · Multipurpose Community Telecentres
          · 2003
          · Mozambique: News Archives 2003
          · News Archives
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