WCIT MONITOR Issue 66 Dec 2015 - Page 19

CHARITY THE WORSHIPFUL COMPANY OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGISTS WCIT Projects & Pro-Bono Panel Information Technologists Provide IT Support for help2read.org and give the gift of literacy in South Africa H elp2read is a child literacy organisation that works with primary schools in South Africa. Conscious of a lack of in-house skills, resource and budget, help2read turned to WCIT for independent strategic advice. The Livery’s P&P panel then The charity currently operates in referred the work to Freeman communities throughout the Western Matthew Hampson, Chief Cape and parts of Gauteng using a Technology Officer, Nomura largely volunteer workforce. Since its Wholesale. Hampson developed a inception, it has worked in almost 200 comprehensive report with schools and has helped thousands of recommended best steps for IT children. It is currently actively working on usage across the charity’s expanding its programme to the more operations, and has actively rural provinces of South Africa. supported implementation of the chosen systems. “We have a team of 300 dedicated volunteers who do a great job, working with students to improve their reading Clare continues: “WCIT’s help has been levels and encouraging them to become invaluable in enabling us to put our whole confident, self-assured individuals that operation on a much stronger footing. We succeed in education,” says Clare expect that working with WCIT will enable Haskins, Director, help2read. us to drive operational efficiencies, in turn enabling us to communicate better, raise “To achieve our core aim of raising more money and mobilise more literacy levels, we need reliable and volunteers reaching more children in need flexible IT solutions that allow us to keep of literacy support in primary schools in our operations both in the UK and in South Africa” South Africa up and running while maintaining a strong online presence,” Freeman Matt said: “For a charity like she adds. “It’s a complex challenge made help2read, having a robust, yet flexible IT harder by the constant power cuts and infrastructure in place is a must in load shedding that impact our managing the extensive databases they Johannesburg and Cape Town offices.” have and in maintaining the vital © Jac Kritzinger online ‘shop window’ they need to engage with schools, pupils and volunteers and to keep delivering the invaluable work they carry out every day for disadvantaged children in South Africa. WCIT is delighted to have the opportunity to provide the systems, solutions and advice they need to ensure they achieve their goals.” Story by Tom Webb The Whiteoaks Consultancy & Clare Haskins, Director of help2read WCIT Combined Professionals Panel I n December, The WCIT Hall hosted the first meeting of the Combined Professionals Panel. The Company is blessed with a rich and diverse membership from a number of professions, including: Accountants; Actuaries; Bankers; Management Consultants; Marketers; Medics; HR Professionals; and Lawyers (with apologies to any professions missing from the list – there will be a prize bottle of wine for the first volunteer from any other professions represented within the Company). The key aims of the Combined Professionals Panel are to:  marshall expertise within the Company among professionals who support the IT industry;  provide a focal point for discussion of financial, regulatory and legal issues for the technology industry through seminars and lunches (continuing the work of the Law Panel, which is now subsumed)  provide mentoring and career Chairman and WCIT Liveryman, guidance for students of the Dr Huw Beverley-Smith Hammersmith Academy and Lilian Baylis Technology School looking to enter the professions;  develop links and host events with professional Livery Companies who are either involved in the ICT industry itself or in industries in which ICT is a key business driver, such as banking and insurance. Please contact the Chairman Liverym