R.G. Miller Engineers has donated 22 computers – 20 laptops and 2 desktops – to the Babacarr Bittaye Foundation for Peace, which is dedicated to improving the lives of people in Gambia and especially in the rural Village of Chamen.
Malick Bittaye, P.E., project manager in the RGME Public Works Department and a native of Chamen, is a member of the foundation, which was named after his great-grandfather.
The computers, which have been donated in two shipments, are reformatted RGME computers, said Ashley Hinkle, the firm’s IT coordinator.
“Every four years, we replace the workstations that our employees use to make sure we stay up-to-date with technology,” she said, adding that the machines are then sent out to be professionally wiped and ready for use.
One of the primary objectives of the foundation is improving educational opportunities in the community of Chamen and the surrounding villages, and these computers are needed to fulfill this objective, Malick said. “I had never used a computer until my final year of high school, where I had a few chances to see and touch one. The foundation now has the opportunity to use these donated computers to improve the learning experience of both children and adults within the community.”
He notes that the beneficiaries so far have included school children, university students including medical students, vocational training candidates, and teachers.
“Currently, the foundation is looking at the possibility of establishing a community computer center in collaboration with other sponsors,” he said, noting that the primary challenge to doing so is obtaining the necessary electricity to run it.
Meanwhile, he said, the foundation is thankful to RGME for the generous gesture and will make best use of the opportunity.