Gallery: UNICEF Upcycles Oil Drums into Solar-Powered Digital Kiosks fo...

Thousands of people in rural Uganda lack access to the kind of information and technology that the rest of us take for granted, but UNICEF is changing all of that with this awesome new solar-powered digital kiosk made of locally-sourced, recycled materials. Since oil drums are a ubiquitous feature of the African landscape and are also very durable, the designers chose to upcycle them into rugged information access points that can withstand the sometimes harsh climate. Read on to check out these bright green, sun-powered babies in action!

It is well-documented that improved access to information has the power to transform individuals and communities, so UNICEF contributed funding to bring 100 new computer kiosks powered by the sun to youth centers throughout Uganda. They are constructed off-site out of oil drums and other locally-sourced materials and are then attached to the exterior walls of community centers throughout this equatorial country.

Initial installation of the digital kiosks – including hardware, solar power and internet connectivity – costs approximately US$6,000. Following that, it will cost roughly $2,000 to maintain the computers each year. To make this project as sustainable as possible, UNICEF has instituted small income generation activities and opportunities for micro-enterprise including battery and mobile phone charging stations, typing, printing, and IT repair services. Not only are they sustainable, but these drum computers are such a source of pride for the communities that nobody can take their hands off of them!



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