News and content for IESC/Geekcorps Mali

January 31, 2005

As one of the administrators of the Geekcorps Mali website I was responsible for writing articles, and editing and publishing articles by other authors.

Here is an article I wrote for IESC/Geekcorps.

Geekcorps and HKI team up for training

Participants come to Bamako to learn how they can use the Internet

Monday 31st January 2005

Today Geekcorps Mali and Helen Keller International (HKI) kicked off an intensive four-day Internet training at HKI’s Bamako headquarters.

Twenty participants from radio stations across Mali, from Kayes to Sikasso to Gao, were selected based on their technical experience. They will learn from discussions and hands-on activities over the coming week.

Geekcorps project lead Ian Howard set up the intranet for the training and provided network support as the workshops began. Volunteers Laura Drewett and Peter Baldwin will lead sessions, and volunteers Matt Kuiken and Robin Taylor will assist.

HKI staff Cheick Sidibe and Christian Fares opened the week with an overview of Internet history and worldwide usage statistics (with a particular focus on Africa). They reviewed some of the uses and benefits of the Internet and participants added many items to the list, for example, a tool for fostering development or providing distance training.

Over the next two days, HKI and Geekcorps volunteer Laura Drewett will lead the participants in learning about

  • basic Internet skills (using a browser, searching, email, etc.)
  • digital images
  • open source software (Open Office, Firefox, Gimp, Avast, etc.)
  • online marketing and the benefits of having a website
  • content management systems (CMS)

On the third and fourth days, Geekcorps volunteer Peter Baldwin will lead the trainees in a hands-on training of SPIP, the open-source CMS chosen by Geekcorps to manage its sites (including this one). By the end of the training, the class will not only know how to log in to the system, write an article, and publish it via the CMS, but will have actually done so on a local copy of their own website.

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