Capetonians now have free internet access at all public libraries in the city under the Smart Cape Access Project to extend information technology to all. Launched on an experimental basis in six libraries in low-income areas in 2002, today the service is available at over 80 libraries city-wide. In addition to surfing the net free of charge, the 54,000 registered users can also use the designated computers to prepare documents and send emails using a special "@smartcape.org.za" e-mail address. Cape Town is the first city in South Africa to offer free internet access at all public libraries and there are now plans to set up a mobile IT centre to take computers and internet to communities that currently have no access to either. The project is the result of a partnership between local government and private enterprise. It received a major boost in 2003 when it won the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundations $1 million Access to Learning Award.
Wanted in Africa
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