Friday, November 6, 2009

Computer Labs for Kids: Update on SOS Childrens Village

Prior post. All systems are go for Shira’s newest project, this time stateside in Illinois – the SOS Childrens Village of Illinois. Twenty-eight children (pre-teen) will receive brand new Dell laptops along with the training to use them! Shira and other volunteers, including yours truly, will be working with the kids and the computers on site next Sunday, November 15, 2009. Shira has a wish. She would like to be able to load software that teaches kids how to play chess on all 28 laptops. They run Windows XP. There are no funds available to purchase 28 copies of software, not even at a discount. Shira has posted this wish at If you can find it in your heart, we would greatly appreciate your help in obtaining the necessary copies of software to load on to the laptops that Shira’s Foundation will be turning over to their future youthful owners next Sunday. I am thrilled, delighted, and touched that Shira took up on a suggestion I made a few months ago, about using the computers to teach the kids to play chess. The educational, social and personal benefits that learning how to play chess brings to a young person (and adults, too), are well documented. Much information about the benefits of chess and information about some of the work being done with our youth around the United States can be found at GM Susan Polgar’s blog, the 9Queens website, and at GM Alexandra Kosteniuk’s blog. I will try to take lots of pictures – that is, if we are allowed. There may be privacy concerns regarding the children -- I will be sure to check on this. I will be sure to take plenty of pictures of Shira and any other volunteer who comes within camera range! I promise I will only publish photos of myself that I deem suitable for adult viewing :)

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