[Dateline: Vienna/New York | Author: UNODC/iSeek]
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has donated 60 used computers to the Afghanistan Women and Children’s Rights Association for the benefit of girls' schools around Kunduz in north-eastern Afghanistan.
The donation consists of personal computers and monitors, and will be used in four schools in the Kunduz area, providing Afghan girls with the opportunity to gain information technology skills and access to modern communication technologies.
Over 6 million children were enrolled in schools in Afghanistan last year, 35 per cent of whom are girls who had been deprived of education under the Taliban regime.
After a long journey from the UNODC headquarters in Vienna, Austria, and long process of customs procedure in Kabul, officials of the United Nations Development Promgramme and the UNODC Office in Kabul managed to clear the computers and recently presented them to the Association in Kunduz.
All the personal computers were loaded with free software and ready for use on arrival, without any need to configure.
“We are very happy to see that the equipment arrived safely and in good shape and more important that they are used by the Association for the benefit of educating women in Afghanistan,” UNODC’s Oussama Khreis told iSeek.
The Information Technology Service of the UNODC got permission to ship used and replaced IT equipment to schools, universities and associations that could make good use of them. A Zambian university was the first beneficiary of the shipment. It was followed by the request from the Afghanistan Women and Children Rights Association in Kunduz.
“This activity (shipment) is funded by the regular budget in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals,” said Phillip Kruss of UNODC. Under the initiative, one shipment is funded every year and the consignment for 2009 is scheduled for schools in Kenya.
There are some 16 United Nations agencies in Afghanistan working to fulfill the tasks and responsibilities entrusted to the Organization in the Bonn Agreement, including those related to human rights, the rule of law, and gender issues.