News of the Free Software in Togo

During the first three weeks of March 2023, two prominent members of YovoTogo Association traveled through Togo from south to north and back to Lomé. The main goals of this solidarity journey were:

  • the follow-up of the sponsorships in favor of the handicapped youth,
  • the evaluation mission of the end of the Support to the Women Leaders of Tandjouaré project,
  • the allocation of laptops to 29 university students in Kara and Lomé,
  • and the creation of 3 new computer rooms.

In the text below, we are going to tell you only the key moments of this adventure linked to the “Free digital technology for youth and education in Togoproject, the full text of the YovoTogo 2023 solidarity journey is available on this page, and the main events here.

Saturday March 4th

Marie-Paule and Claude together with Yobé, president of the JUMP Lab’Orione association, and Charles, the volunteer computer specialist of this structure, who manages the maintenance of the 10 computer rooms installed in the region, join the middle school of Pya Akeï, 5 kilometers north of the city of Kara. It is a school hosting 415 students including 257 girls, with a brand new computer room equipped with 20 computers that will be inaugurated today.

As usual, there will be songs and dances to welcome the students, as well as the presence of local official and traditional authorities who will greet the event as a great progress for this establishment.

Welcome songs and dances for the inauguration of the computer room

Charles and the Regional Director of Education

Then, in the afternoon, meeting with the 14 students of the University of Kara coming from the association “Vivre dans l’espérance[Living in Hope] directed by Sister Marie Stella, and whose vocation is to take care of AIDS orphans. Each student will be given a laptop computer running Emmabuntüs that they will be able to keep until the end of their studies.

Togo-mars-2023-Photo souvenir

Photo taken in front of the hall with the beneficiaries

Wednesday March 8th

In the morning, Marie-Paule and Claude visited the sponsored children within their families or at their school. Then, after a nice lunch break bringing a little freshness, the temperatures exceeding 40°C [104° Fahrenheit], they are joined by Benjamin and Jean from the association “Vivre dans l’Espérance” for the visit of the computer room installed in February in the “Children’s Hope” school, which is the 31st room equipped by YovoTogo since 2015 with its partners JUMP Lab’Orione and Emmabuntüs.

Marie-Paule visiting the computer room at the “Children’s Hope” school.

Tuesday March 14th

Marie-Paule and Claude have been in Togo for 15 days now and this morning they are at the “Collège Le bon Pasteur” [Good Shepherd middle school] in Dapaong for the inauguration of the 32nd computer room created jointly by YovoTogo and its partners JUMP Lab’Orione and the Emmabuntüs Collective.

The computer room of the Good Shepherdmiddle school, equipped with 20 computers

It is a recent school hosting 180 students of which 96 are girls. We are all happy to be able to participate in the development of this school by giving it the opportunity to add the computer science subject to its curriculum.

YovoTogo’s Marie-Paule and Claude among and for the children

Then they will meet their partners of JUMP Lab’Orione for a working meeting around a table in a good local restaurant, joining the useful to the pleasant, in order to make the status of their partnership, to bring solutions to the recurring problems or emerging issues, and to look at all the accomplishments realizes since year 2015.

Business lunch with the partners.

Monday March 20th

Today, in the capital, we go through the 3rd and last phase of the computer support brought to the children of the association “Vivre dans l’espérance” [Living in Hope], extension of the orphanage for children whose parents died of AIDS, structure created and led by Sister Marie Stella in Dapaong. Here, we are talking about the delivery of 15 laptops to 9 girls and 6 boys, all students of the University of Lomé. These laptops were initially given by the company ATF Gaia thanks to the action of Véronique of YovoTogo.

Group picture of the 15 beneficiaries

And Elias, founder of the Ubuntu Space in Agbodrafo, will give them their first overview of the Emmabuntüs system.

The first approach by Elias

This free software project for youth and education in Togo, initiated in 2015, has not only equipped 32 computer rooms and made laptops available to students from disadvantaged families, but has also provided computer equipment to small social structures. And you can have a look at the detailed map of the free software spreading in Togo.

It has enabled computer training in educational and/or social structures for approximately 45,000 children (a number based on an evaluation of the number of students who attended computer trainings between years 2015 and 2022), as well as the creation of 22 jobs for computer and office automation trainers who are responsible for the rooms.

Map of Togo showing the computer rooms fitted with refurbished computers running Emmabuntüs,
delivered by YovoTogo, JUMP Lab’Orione and Emmabuntüs from 2015 to 2023.

This project was made possible thanks to the computer donations made by different institutions or equipments resold by solidarity recycling centers, tanks also to the financial support of the Emmabuntüs collective through their earnings via Lilo, a French and solidarity-based search engine, and to all the Internet users who supported us.

Thanks in advance for staying mobilized to support us via Lilo.