A Greek primary school received an early Christmas present last month when kind hearted officials from a local IT company sent over 12 refurbished computers.
Ignite, based at the Enterprise Park, delivered the computers, through its ‘Make It Green’ initiative - much to the delight of 65 pupils at a small school in the south east coast of the Crete island, Ferma Primary.
Andy McAllister from Ignite flew over on a three day trip to present the computers to the Crete principal Ioannis Pasparakis.
He described the trip as a ‘great experience.’
“This was a school with children who have very little but who are very happy,” he explained.
“The principal was very grateful that we brought these computers over to him and told us how it would help the pupils. One of the pupils is autistic and he cannot even get a classroom assistant so computers will benefit him greatly. The school really has no money for anything. Even when we where there were two or three power cuts.”
Lagan Valley MLA Basil McCrea met with the Greek principal at a European Convention in Milan where he heard of the school and the country’s plight - experiencing economic difficulty.
Mr Pasparakis gave a presentation and explained that he abandoned his professional power point presentation in favour of scrap of paper which was all that his school and his country’s IT strategy amounted to .
He told officials there that the school had received 12 computers in 2000 but the software to run them did not arrive until 2007 which was by then effectively useless.
He also spoke of his frustration that while many countries were investing heavily in science and IT education his country could not, and the children at his school would be unable to compete.
Ignite’s ‘Make It Green’ initiative presented 16 computers recently to Mission Africa in Nigeria. The project is supported by the DoE and designed to ensure that computing equipment is never sent to landfill,