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Delta opens learning center in Uganda

By Kaitlyn Skrzypczak
On April 19, 2014

Students at Greenhill High School in Kabale, Uganda now have access to several computers and an internet connection due to a collaborative effort by several Delta staff and alumni.

The Delta Internet Café opened in Kabale over six months ago thanks in part to Katie Oswald, who saw a need for computer education after volunteering in Uganda for two years while in the Peace Corps.

While at Michigan State pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics, Oswald became more involved in community organization and felt inspired to broaden her efforts.

“I got a general sense or feeling that we have a moral obligation to help people who have less than us. I think in developing countries especially, but also in our own community,” said Oswald.

After applying to the Peace Corps in 2010, she received an invitation to volunteer in Uganda.

“They just tell you where they need you the most,” said Oswald.

As an economic development volunteer, she helped oversee microfinance related projects. Her work consisted of aiding local farmer’s co-ops to pool their resources, so they could produce more food and earn more.

She also worked in a secondary school located in Kiziranfumbi, Uganda for a year and a half in the school’s library. During that time, she helped start a women’s savings and loan association.

“I’m glad I got to work at secondary school; I saw the flaws in their education system and got to see what a great need they have for quality education for young people,” said Oswald.

In the last 6 months of her service, she moved to Kubala, Uganda, which is near Rwanda. She worked with BRAC, an international development organization, as a research assistant.

Seeing a need for quality education, Oswald contacted Delta’s Global Peace Studies Program and the student-run Peace Club. Her idea was to open an internet café in Kabale to provide students and the community with access to computers and to help teach them computer skills.

Her idea was accepted as a worthwhile project and the process began. The Peace Club donated $500 to purchase internet access so the students and community could learn online. The club earned the money through the Dow Chemical “Clean Up America” grant. To receive the grant, the club worked at a children’s museum in Mount Pleasant, picking up litter and constructing four vegetable beds for children. 12

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