Community ICT training

Community Information and Communication Technology (ICT) training is an exciting but challenging endeavor. Training contents need to address the local learners’ immediate information needs to keep the learners engaged, while the training structure and approach have to take many factors into consideration, including the human resources to serve as trainers, the schedule of the locals, and the learning style of the locals. Community ICT training is not just about technology, but involves a paradigm shift. We need and welcome community informatics researchers and experts to help develop strategies for how ICTs can enable and empower rural communities for the ICT training to sustain and become an integral part of self-conscious community development.


2013: Children’s Poster Design

With this project, Tongwei County Public Library provided 8-session course for 30 elementary school students in Summer Holiday, culminating in the design  of a poster on environmental protection by each student, which summarized the student's work. As a result, 86% of students mastered the basic MS Word processing techniques and 63% of students mastered the basic steps of poster design. Part of the school library system close to the villages was leveraged to reach out to meet the ICT needs of the villagers.


2012: Surfing the Web with the Elderly

This project by Tongwei County Public Library provided an 11-session ICT course and a 3-hour practice/mentoring session every week for a group of 30 elders  in the township. All of the trainees learned basic PC operations and inputting Chinese text, news reading, online entertainment (movie, music, games). Of the village elders, 50% learned how to take online courses, and look up health information; 10% mastered online shopping and online banking, email, and online messaging.


Pilot Project: TianZhu ICT Training (May 2009 - May 2012)

Tianzhu No. 1 High School Evergreen Central Library collaborated with 6 school libraries on 5 agricultural sites to provide training on information self-aid to the local farmers, i.e. how to acquire information needed by daily life and livelihood from the Internet, e.g. on agricultural technology, marketing, policy and regulations, healthcare. This extended project explores an effective model for performing ICT education in the rural areas, with a goal of replicating the model in other service areas of Evergreen Education Foundation and beyond.

The project service team includes:

1) computer teachers of Tianzhu No. 1 High School as seed trainers, who trained other trainers, and went to the extension sites for extensive training;

2) computer teachers of the 6 schools and core members of the farmer students as local trainers, who provided training to the farmers whenever the latter have spare time;

3) the volunteer group from the Department of Information Management, Lanzhou University, who helped manage the online forum (which served as a vehicle to reflect the training status, facilitate exchange between the students, and assess the outcome);

4) the volunteer group consisting of library professionals in Shanxi, who designed assessment scheme for the project;

5) Evergreen project management staff responsible for coordinating the efforts of training group, assessment group and online forum group.

The project team produced the teaching materials and adjusted the training model based on the needs of the students and constraints of reality. By June 2010, through the exploration of Phase I of this project, the project team had formed a training model featuring: 1) train the local trainers, and use training provided by local trainers as an important component; 2) teach students according to their aptitude and encourage students to help and learn from each other. As a result, some students now can search for information of interest such as plastic shed farming, the cultivation of hongti grape, disease prevention for pig farming, etc., and can share the information in the online forum. Moving forward, the project will focus on expanding the trainee base and/or extending the training depth, as well as the systematic assessment of the project impact.

Here is the list of the 6 school libraries and their corresponding agricultural sites:

Extension school library

Corresponding Agricultural Site

Tiantang Nine-year School, Kela Elementary School

Tiantang Village Government Loan Biogas Project Park

Shimen Elementary School

Shimen Village Green Vegetable Model Project Park

Huazangsi Middle School

Huazangsi Chakouyi Village Highland Agricultural Technology Park

Hongda Elementary School

Hongda Village Land-exchange Poverty-alleviation Project Park

Songshan Middle School

Songshan Town Highland Shelter-feeding Breed Improvement Project Park







Evergreen Education Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit charity registered in California, United States. Registration number 68-0474814.