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Computer lab opens in Wenchuan school, thanks to community, staff and students at Holland College and Vancouver Island University

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When a devastating earthquake hit Sichuan Province in China May 12th, 2008, staff at Holland College and Malespina University College (now called Vancouver Island University), partners in the Enhance Rural Teacher Training Project, under the Canadian College Partnership Program (CCPP) in the province, responded by organizing a series of fund raising activities. This five-year project was funded by CIDA through ACCC, and was completed one month prior to the earthquake.

The epicentre was in Wenchuan, a rural, impoverished and remote region of northern Sichuan. Schools serving more than 1,000 kindergarten children and primary school teachers were destroyed. Some of the victims were students and teachers in the schools of Wenchuan, many of whom were friends of staff at Holland College and Vancouver Island University. In total, staff and students and their communities in Canada raised $35,000, which they donated to Yingxiu Primary School for a computer lab.

Submitted by Jolene Chan, Manager, International Office, Asia Pacific Region

Nearly three years after the Wenchuan earthquake, the majority of the recovery and reconstruction of the Abe Prefecture has been completed, especially schools and residences for the local people.

The construction of Yingxiu Primary School was finally completed at the end of February. All the students are able to move back to the new school. Although the government requested that construction be completed by the end of March 2010, there were many unexpected weather conditions in the course of construction period, such as a heavy rain storm, a landslide, and a severe winter, which delayed completion of the school by almost a year. In spite of all the challenges and difficulties, the people in Wenchuan tirelessly laboured to overcome these problems.

The Yingxiu Primary School and the interactive multimedia lab donated by Holland College and Vancouver Island University were successfully completed earlier this year, and an official opening ceremony for the computer lab was held in March.

The interactive multimedia lab is the only computer lab at the school,and will support 700 students learning IT skills. This state-of-the-art computer lab contains 40 desktop computers and a master teacher’s computer that is hooked up LCD projector and a smart board.

The teachers and students are very excited to access the computer lab. The majority of students said that they have never used a computer before, and now they will have the opportunity to learn computer skills while they are in school.

On behalf of the Yingxiu Primary School, Holland College and Vancouver Island University, we would like to thank the students, faculty, staff and the communities in Prince Edward Island and Vancouver Island for their generosity and support in this great cause.

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Written by Sara Underwood

April 26, 2011 at 1:09 pm

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