Education initiatives in Africa are set to benefit from used Scottish Government computer hardware.

Schools, communities and education projects in sub-Saharan Africa are to receive used computer equipment from the Scottish Government thanks to a partnership with the Turing Trust charity.

The equipment, which is no longer suitable for corporate use within the government, includes computers, mobile phones and tablets, and will be sent to Malawi, Ghana and Liberia.

The Turing Trust, co-founded by James Turing in honour of his great uncle, the World War 2 codebreaker Alan Turing, recently took delivery of the first 100 computers, mice and keyboards.

To date the Trust has put more than 4,250 computers in hundreds of schools, supported the training of more than 530 teachers, and reused more than 69 tonnes of waste.

It already receives support from the Scottish Government, having been awarded £60,000 in International Small Grants Programme funding this year to provide computer training for 80 teachers in Malawi. This funding will ensure that teachers have the skills and resources to teach digital literacy to 9,000 Malawian girls who would normally be excluded from lessons because of gender, disability or where they live.

International Development Minister Ben Macpherson said: “This is an excellent partnership which showcases the Scottish Government’s dedication to good global citizenship, improving digital literacy and developing the circular economy.

“By donating these computers we will help hundreds of teachers and thousands of children and adult students in Africa to develop their computer skills and their career prospects as a result.

“What’s more, we will be extending the useful life of Scottish Government computer equipment by recycling materials, offsetting carbon emissions and ensuring that it does not go to landfill.”

Mr Turing said: “I’m really excited to be working with the Scottish Government. These donations will significantly improve the lives and learning outcomes of children, adult students and teachers in Africa.

“Being able to reuse this equipment means that we’ll be offsetting significant carbon emissions, meaning this donation is good for both people and the planet.”

The Scottish Government Small Grants Programme was established in 2013 to help grow the international development sector in Scotland and to support it in assisting some of the world’s most vulnerable communities in our partner countries. It supports Scotland-based organisations with an annual expenditure of less than £250,000. 

The Scottish Government operates a policy to refresh devices every four or five years, to ensure they are capable of running modern secure software and operating systems. With cyber security high on the agenda, this ensures the integrity of our network.