Computers for Zambian Schools

A Non-profit trust that manages the distribution of computers to Zambian schools

About Us

Mission

Since its creation in 2005, Computers for Zambian Schools’ (CFZS) mission is to help Transform ICT Education in Zambia, by:   

  • Providing schools with access to good-quality, low-cost refurbished: desktops, laptops, projectors and printers. Since 2006, CFZS has distributed over 13,000 computers to more than 800 schools in Zambia.
  • Providing relevant ICT teacher and learning materials (TLMs). We do this by installing free educational content in our desktops and laptops which helps bridge the learning materials gap.  

  • As of August 2019, providing teacher training in the form of a 5-day course where we train teachers in basic ICT skills – Office Packages (Excel, Word, Powerpoint and Publisher), Preventive Maintenance, Computer Ergonomics, Google Classrooms and Zoom.    

CFZS Structure

Computers for Zambian Schools (CFZS) is a Zambian Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), with a Board of local and international,  independent Directors.  The organisation currently employs three-part and full-time staff – a Programme Manager, Admin and IT Technician. 

The NGO also periodically facilitates an Internship Programme, aimed at offering local young graduates (from school or college) the opportunity to gain work experience.  The charity’s office is at 2400 Felopater House, Kabelenga Road, across the road from Levy Mall.   

CFZS Achievements

2005 – 2021

  • Distributed over 18,500 desktop and laptop computers to all provinces from;

2017- 2020

  • Donated 648 desktops to various schools around the country (bogof scheme);

2019 – 2022

  • A total number of 223 teachers trained in basic ICT literacy to enable them to improve their lesson delivery;

2019

  • Baraka Education Centre –Kapiri MposhiDonated 30 Laptops;  LAB

2019

  • Nchanga Youth Development Centre – ChingolaDonated 30 Desktops;  LAB

2019

  • UTH Special Needs School (SLCZ) – Lusaka  - Donated 14 Laptops. LAB

2016

  • Joseph Centre – Lusaka- Donated 30 Desktops;  LAB

2016

  • St Joseph Secondary School – Lusaka- Donated 10 Desktops;

2018

  • Matipula Primary  and Secondary School – ChongweDonated 30 Desktops;  LAB

2017

  • Prince Takamodo Primary School – Lusakav - 70 Desktops;  LAB

2017 & 2018 

  • Lilanda Basic School – LusakaDonated 30 Desktops and Fully Networked the Computer LAB; 

2017

  • Chainda Orphanage School, -Lusaka – Donated  10 Desktops;

2015

Kanyama Primary School – Donated 20 Desktops.

Other non ICT related achievements:

  1. 2021 donated 20 Desks and chairs donated- Prince Takamado Basic School
  2. 2021 donated 9,000 face masks to various schools
  3.  2019 – 2021 donated books through  Zambia Open Community Schools (ZOCS), Stella Project, Baraka (Z) Ltd, Lilanda Primary School.  
  4. 2017 donated various sporting gear with collaborating partners - Tackle Africa  

Sourcing Computers

CFZS sources computers from a UK registered charity, IT Schools Africa (ITSA). In the UK, ITSA’s operations include:

  • Fundraising to subsidise the cost of computers
  • Undertaking promotions and marketing to generate donations of computer equipment
  • Collecting computers from organisations across the country
  • Erasing all the hard drives
  • Refurbishing and testing the equipment
  • Loading new software – e.g. Licensed Windows 10 Operating System
  • Packing the equipment ready for shipment

Computer Specifications

ITSA provides CFZS with complete sets of good quality, low-cost desktop computers, including CPU, flat screen, keyboard (UK), mouse and two UK mains leads.  All the computers meet or exceed an agreed minimum specification.  The computers are from a wide range of leading brands, including HP, Dell, Lenovo, Fujitsu-Siemens and RM, and are typically 3-5years old.  Currently, our minimum specification is:   


Processor: 2.4 GHz 
RAM: 4GB (4096 MB)
Hard-drive: 80GB - 500GB
Media: USB, CD-R, CD-RW or DVD-R 
Connectivity: On board Ethernet port
Software: Windows 10

CFZS Operations

Importation of computers


ITSA ships the computers to CFZS in 20’ (500 computers) or 40’ (1000 computers) shipping containers.  On arrival, CFZS co-ordinates the clearing of the containers, liaising with the clearing agents and ZRA.  In order to keep the cost recovery fee as low as possible it is important that CFZS is able to import the computers free of duty.   

Testing


Before the computers are issued to the schools, all the equipment is fully re-tested to detect and repair any failures due to damage in transit.


Communication to schools 

CFZS seeks to inform schools of the scheme through a range of methods including school visits, communicating through telephone calls, the District Education Board (DEBS) Secretaries, presenting at meetings of Head Teachers, social media and our website.   

Computer distribution


CFZS’s main focus is government, private, grant-aided, missionary and community schools.  Any such schools may contact us to benefit from the scheme.  After payment (of the cost-recovery fee), the schools collect the computers from CFZS’s office in Lusaka. We are also able to put the computers on buses and send them to desired destinations, at the owners cost and risk.   

Technical support


CFZS provides on-going support to schools that have received computers through the programme.  Faulty computers may be returned to CFZS for repair; computers (to schools) come with a 90-day warranty.  CFZS staff are also able to provide technical support telephonically even after the warranty has expired. Our Technician or Programmes Manager also does site visits once a year (for the first three years) for our Computer Lab installations.  

Recycling


When the computers have come to the end of their life in schools, i.e. are obsolete or beyond economic repair, the schools are encouraged to return the equipment to CFZS, free of charge for recycling.  CFZS then arranges for this equipment to be recycled at a local recycling company.   

Education

Educational software   

CFZS provides free educational content pre-installed on all our computers for both the pupils and teachers to use, which is accessible Offline – meaning it does not require an internet connection. This educational content is sourced from Open sources such as Khan Academy Lite, RACHEL, the Gutenberg Project, e-Learning for Kids. In an effort to assist our teachers in using the e-content, we have recently provided a short tutorial on how to use the educational content on each desktop they purchase.  

This electronic educational content acts as a support to the already existing TLMs that the schools might have, although in most cases the resources are few and outdated. This educational content, ranging from 4 GB to 40 GB in size, covers a large range of topics, aimed at primary, secondary and even college level. The content covers a wide variety of subjects such as English, Maths, ICT’s just to name a few.   

Teacher Training

CFZS provides teacher training through a partner NGO which offers a professional development course aimed at improving teaching methodologies related to ICT. The modules are designed to cover as much material over a five day working week, meaning that teachers are not out of class for prolonged periods of time whilst upgrading their qualifications.  

CFZS Breakdown Of Schools and Teachers Trained Per Area in 2021 

 

Who can be trained?

Anyone identified by a head teacher or person in-charge. This can be an ICT Teacher or a teacher in any other subject.   As we are trying to empower all subject teachers to be able to use a computer to teach their subjects, we encourage as many schools to give this training opportunity to other teachers besides the ICT teacher.

 

Where and how are they trained?

The trainer (s) can visit schools/community computer lab and provide training on-site. This can be during school holidays, term time etc.

 

What kind of ICT training is provided? 

Basic ICT in The teacher training is entirely modelled on the primary and secondary school curriculum set out by the Zambian Ministry of General Education (MOGE), with some additional relevant ICT information from open sources – Khan Academy.

Is it a TEVETA qualification? 

No, it is not. The course content was created based on the Zambian Syllabus and after collaborating with various partners that are involved in the education field and from feedback from various stakeholders such as teachers, head teachers etc. A Certificate of Attendance from us as Computers for Zambian Schools is awarded upon successful completion of the course.  

When and how long is the training?

 The training can be delivered through-out the year, to suit the needs of the learning institutions.   The modules are 5-day courses, Mon-Fri, 8-17hrs. We can also facilitate the training on weekends as well.

How much is the training?

The training is entirely funded by our fundraising capabilities, meaning that schools are not charged for the cost of training.

The schools that apply for the program have to cover the transport and lunch costs of the teachers that express an interest in the program.  Having mentioned that, should they face any difficulties or challenges in doing this, they can always inform us and we will see how best we can help the school.

Training Programmes Conducted.                                                                                                                                                                      

 Kafue District  (Lusaka Province)

 Kitwe Town (Copperbelt Province)

                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Chingola (Copperbelt Province)


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Financial Sustainability                                                                                                                                                                                     

Computers for Zambian Schools runs a Social Enterprise model and it generates income in two ways:   

  1. Charging a cost recovery fee for most computers. Schools and learning institutions are helped through our discount programs or donation programs in a bid to help them access more computer hardware.  As the price of these computers is subsidized, they tend to be more competitive.   
  2. Fundraising.  
  3. The revenue generated covers CFZS’s running costs (premises, wages, and clearance costs) and contributes to the ITSA’s costs in collecting, refurbishing, and shipping the computers.    

The Future

CFZS plans for the future include us:   

  1. Continually improving the quality of equipment provided to Zambian schools;
  2. Including more educational content on the computers so that they may be used to improve the teaching of other subjects. We are currently in discussions with local partners in trying to avail  e-content, based on the local curriculum, on our computers  to enhance e-learning
  3. Providing more digital teaching tools e.g.: digital boards, projectors, printers and scanners to the schools   
  4. Building a Centre of Excellence for ICT Learning – open community members, teachers and school leavers.