Edinburgh charity hailed for giving computer training to Malawi children

Minister hails charity’s work providing computer training to children in Malawi

By Neil Pooran
Wednesday, 16th February 2022, 4:48 pm

A Foreign Office minister has praised the work of a Scottish charity which is run by the family of Second World War codebreaker Alan Turing.

The Turing Trust, based in Edinburgh, provides computer training for children in Malawi and supplies them with refurbished computers.

Vicky Ford, the UK Government’s minister for Africa, met the Turing family on Wednesday.

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Schoolchildren in Malawi are learning computer skills thanks to the Edinburgh-based charity.

The charity has so far refurbished over 9,200 PCs, enabling more than 81,000 students across Africa to gain a digital education since it launched in 2015.

It recently received a £50,000 grant from the Foreign Office to help 8,900 Malawian schoolgirls learn how to use computers.

Ms Ford said: “The UK Government is proud to help the Turing Trust build on the outstanding legacy of Alan Turing, by giving thousands of children in Malawi their first access to computer technology.

James Turing praised generous Scots for donating unwanted computer equipment to the charity.

“I’ve been delighted to meet today with the family of the British icon who played such a significant role in sparking the digital revolution, to find out how they are now ensuring schools in some of the world’s poorest communities across Malawi are not left behind.

“Computer skills are a crucial tool in giving vulnerable children a ladder out of poverty in the 21st century and this project is the perfect example of UK aid supporting a Scottish charity to be a force for good in the world.

“Returning to Scotland, following the success of Cop26 in Glasgow it is inspiring to see first-hand how the Turing Trust is recycling technology to give it an important new purpose in Malawian schools.”

The charity’s chief executive James Turing is Alan Turing’s great nephew.

He said: "My great uncle is often described as the father of modern computer science, so we are proud to be carrying on that legacy by helping some of the world’s poorest children get access to computers in schools.

“Our deepest thanks go out to the households and businesses who have donated their unwanted IT equipment.

“Whilst they might not meet the demands for the typical British office or home setting, once we wipe and rebuild them they are an invaluable resource for helping kids start their digital journey.

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