Colombo Fort, Sri Lanka

Nenasala for Fort Railway Station

"Easy access along with the central is key attributes to its popularity and success," says Vijay Vijayaratnam, the owner of Nenasala@FortRailway.

(Colombo) The Fort Railway Station, located at the heart of Colombo, is renowned for its historical and architectural value. Located inside the station, which was built in 1899, is the gateway to a revolutionary step towards giving the public the opportunity to have access and be connected to a global knowledge centre.

The official opening of the Nenasala@FortRailway is the first in a series of Nenasalas to be located islandwide.

As an initiative to enable access to the Internet, distance learning and e-learning, the Nenasala provides a range of services including high speed Internet connections to access national, local and international information, e-mail, telephone, computer training classes and other ICT related facilities.

Apart from these, language training is also featured here. The Nenasala@FortRailway is open daily from 7.00 am to 5.30 pm, as well as on public holidays.

"The Fort Railway Station in Colombo is a very busy place with people from all over the country passing through the station. Usually travellers consist of individuals rushing off to their work place and schools.

Thus the services being provided by the Nenasala play an important role in the day-to-day life, especially for school children that need to fulfil their educational requirements because they are able to log on to the Internet to do research and find new information," Vijay Vijayaratnam, the owner of the Nenasala@FortRailway said.

"The nenasala is very popular among different levels of society that pass through the railway station, comprising students, teachers, government servants, the clergy as well as tourists.

The easy access to a multitude of services along with the central location of the centre is key attributes to its popularity and success," he added.

A majority of the Nenasala's follows a community model where centres are established in the central location of a village such as a religious institution, public library or a community organisation.

A collaborative effort between SLT and ICTA, the project aims to address the current ICT infrastructure deficiencies in rural areas.

As a socially responsible initiative, the key objective in establishing multi service community information centres, is to disseminate knowledge and share information through the Internet to the general public.

In addition, the ultimate goal of the Nenasalas is to provide corporate social responsibility by helping to reduce poverty, promote peace building, economic and social development and improving the IT literacy rate of the country in a long term and sustainable basis.

The project aims to establish 1000 centres in operation by the end of 2008.

The connectivity is powered by communication giant SLT with a guaranteed bandwidth on IP-VPN (Internet Protocol - Virtual Private Network).

Almost 200 Nenasalas have been completed thus far, and will be allowed simultaneous access to support multimedia content delivery, access the Internet for web browsing, e-mail, and government services.

Courtesy: The Ceylon Daily News of Friday, 11 May 2007

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