Donated computers break poverty cycle - November, 2002

Computers make a difference in a Nepali village.

A picturesque village tucked away in the Nepalese mountains may look like a postcard scene. Life is anything but a holiday, however, for its residents.

They battle poverty and, in that struggle, cannot seek answers from the breadth of possibilities they might find through access to computer technology.

“Most students in the rural areas of Nepal have never seen a computer,” says Mahabir Pun, a native from the mountain village of Nangi.

Most students in the rural areas of Nepal have never seen a computer.

Mahabir is using donated computers to break the cycle of poverty.

“We got some computers from Australia, Singapore and Malaysia as a donation. I also collected some used computer parts in the US and took them to the village and assembled the parts in wooden boxes, building 14 computers.”

Nangi is one of the first rural villages to use computers. Mahabir has helped to turn this around by using gifts-in-kind. He founded the Himanchal High School, as well as starting several income-generating programs for the local community.

International news

This pioneering development has featured in several international newspapers. Mahabir was interviewed by the BBC, telling them that"the internet has been a great help for Nangi". His project was then discussed in a follow-up article , and also in the Sydney Morning Herald . The Observer in Canada, and The Kearney Daily Hub, USA have also published articles on the village.

Continuing need

The area is still in much need of help.  Mahabir’s website lists the types of material donations that would help support both the school and the rural development programs. These include stationery supplies, used computers and laboratory equipment for the school, and sewing machines, looms, small machines and tools for the development projects. They are also seeking equipment to help start new projects to support the local community, such as jam making, paper making, and poultry farming.

To support any of these projects, please refer to Mahabir’s website .