This is Stephen and I’d like to talk about how the U-TOUCH Digital Library Center, Gulu has benefited me. First of all, I would like to say I completely had no knowledge of what a computer is, in fact I had never even touched a computer since I was born and never thought of learning and using one some day. It was not until, the U-TOUCH project came in place and set up the Digital Library Centers here in northern Uganda that I got the opportunity to learn computer skills and at the moment, I really have substantial knowledge in computer skills and that has greatly impacted my life positively in a number of ways.
GDPU; Gulu, Uganda. Ojok Simon, left, used to sit on the Board for GDPU. Now, he works there full-time. Mona Richard, right, is a current Board Member. He owns a tailoring shop in town and gets around on his tricycle. Photo by Rebecca Scherpelz.
This sign in a primary school in Gulu says it all. The burdens of an uneducated girl are heavy. With the help of an education a female in Uganda can be liberated from a life of limited possibilities and have the freedom of choice.
U-TOUCH provides computer training, internet access and support to help empower girls and women, as well as men.
CNN - What does a 22-year-old see when she looks at herself in the mirror?
Evelyn Apoko sees a face marred by war, one that is jarring to others. Even she can’t stand to look sometimes.
Doctors reconstructed her jaw, removed scars and balanced her lips. In the coming days, she will get a new jaw implant, a bone graft and a set of upper teeth.
"I see me," she says, after pausing to think about how she might describe her reflection. "I look into my eyes and I know there is something there."
That something came from three harrowing years of captivity and the inner fortitude that fueled her desire to survive, so that she could live to tell about the ugliness she saw.
One summer night in 2001, Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) guerrillas snatched Apoko from a community center near her home in Gulu district, Uganda. Notorious for their cold-blooded cruelty, the LRA beat her, tortured her.