But things started to change in his village Koimari in northern Nilphamari district when Young Bangla, a platform of the non-profit-group Center for Research and Information (CRI), and software giant Microsoft Inc’s Bangladesh chapter joined hands and installed a computer lab at the Upazila where the village is situated.
The tie-up has opened a new horizon for the local farmers who get information required for boosting their production.
“This is unbelievable. Now I can learn computer with almost one-third of the price I would have to pay. They (trainers) are highly trained from Dhaka,” Dipak, a final-year undergraduate student of Jaldhaka Degree College, told bdnews24.com.
After he received the award, Young Bangla arranged more training for him and gave the Microsoft lab to him, apart from supporting him in his social work. The lab opened in June last year with six computers.
“I am getting tremendous response. So far, 40 youths have completed their six-month basic training from this lab,” he told bdnews24.com.
“Now I need even more computers. You know all students now want to learn computer. They have to study ICT in school, but the school does not have good trainers. So they all want to learn from us,” he said.
This lab initiative coincides with two other schemes under the Young Bangla-Microsoft partnership — opportunity of internship and brand ambassadorship, and service engineering training.
Some 400 Young Bangla members received Microsoft Service Engineering Training during eight sessions in rural areas.
A series of workshops has also been held where trainers from Microsoft Bangladesh provided basic operating skills free of cost.
The training focussed on basic computing skills, along with the necessary operating skills and lessons, on solutions to some frequently occurring problem.
A platform for youths, Young Bangla, launched on Nov 12, 2014, has rolled out an array of initiatives to identify, showcase and recognise the young change-makers and give them a platform to work further to help the government achieve its ‘Vision 2021’- making Bangladesh a higher middle income country.
It has also created internship opportunities for students in three ministries – foreign affairs, power, and ICT.