The challenges and barriers I face in blogging almost deter me from blogging. I live in a city and country that is now well-renowned for frequent and unpredictable power-cuts. The ruling authorities seem so scared of ordinary people’s ability to access information on the internet that they have taken it upon themselves to stifle the development and upgrading of our infrastructure. Therefore the connectivity is quite slow, disrupted much, and this coupled with can be very frustrating. It is difficult to always be in touch when one can sometimes spend a week without gaining access. Access issues are also affected by costs in internet cafes.
My work with communities also sometimes takes me to places in rural areas where there is absolutely no possibility of accessing a computer, a phone line, or internet connection. The distance one would need to travel to access internet can take more than half the day. Sometimes I am involved in training, as a facilitator and at times as participant. The programme is many times such that one cannot travel to internet cafes as they would be closed by the time one finishes for the day.
Currently, I try to get round these challenges by building and maintaining excellent relationships with some NGOs who have excellent broadband connection. I do get the permission to access internet from time to time. I have also now seen the value of writing in my personal journal every day. I can still use my pen and book, and can do this under candlelight even. This will mean that I can type at my leisure when necessary and post my assignments and blogs at the earliest opportunity that I can access internet. This is turning out to be an exciting venture, useful for stress relief, and quality of my “me” times. Despite the challenges, and despite the outcomes of this Voices of Our Future Project, at the end of this I will come out a consistent blogger, and will assist other women around me with their writing and IT skills.