Internet Solutions (IS) has provided infrastructure for Infinite Family, a US organisation of concerned families who wish to improve the lives of African children who may have been orphaned due to HIV/Aids or other causes.
The Infinite Family stays in touch through technology which enables them to communicate directly through video conferencing, e-mail, secure internet and interactive tools.
So far, two organisations – Nkosi’s Haven (Johannesburg) and Refilwe (Lanseria) – have been connected and positive changes to the lives of these children are already being seen.
Amy Conrad Stokes is the US-based project leader and has much to say about recent successes: "We recognise that the sites where Infinite Family teens live are not traditional urban, corporate, technologically advanced situations and have greatly appreciated the willingness of the folks at IS to think strategically to solve the unexpected challenges that have arisen.
"As a result of the top of the line internet communications services these sites now receive, these children have access to resources from anywhere in the world. Furthermore, we and the staff that work with them have witnessed dramatic improvements not only in their English and interpersonal skills, they now problem solve the regular computer glitches that arise and help each other to maintain the machines and their connections.
"We are very excited to begin thinking about how to build on these skills and bring their benefits to the wider communities in which the children live. All of this is truly remarkable given that these communities don’t even have good access to landline internet services.”
Anthony Southgate, marketing executive at IS, says the fit between IS and Infinite Family is a good example of how technology can be used to positively improve the lives of those who most need help as well as open up a future that simply did not previously exist.
“We have witnessed real results from this project. Infinite Family has considerable experience in using the internet and other tools to assist these children in a safe and non-pressured environment. Direct intervention is made possible regardless of geographic location. It gives us great pleasure to see such a positive outcome through the use of technology.”