ZARNet in partnership with the Ministry of Information Communication Technology (ICT), Postal and Courier Services, embarked on setting up CICS from 2012. These centres are set to change the way of life in rural Zimbabwe.
Murombedzi Community Information Centre is now a one stop ICT shop which offers internet, photocopying, printing, scanning, faxing, laminating and gaming services. The same concept will be rolled out to eight more offices which are; Mubaira, Murambinda, Ngundu, Maphisa, Gokwe, Dotito, Sadza and Lupane.
The overall aim of establishing community information centres is to achieve equity of access to information, thereby bridge the digital divide between urban and rural communities. ICTs can avail information relevant for agricultural production, processing, marketing, transport and food storage, education, healthcare, disease control as well as environmental managed.
One major problem facing rural communities was the limited access to relevant and current information about health, education, economy, transport and agriculture. The President also highlighted that without information, the rural communities are hampered from fully participating in national development. Therefore the CICs were meant to keep rural areas with development in ICTs.
ICT has greatly impacted and enhanced global socialisation and interaction. We now live in an interdependent global society, where people can interact and communicate swiftly and efficiently. News and information can now be transmitted in minutes and individuals can contact with family members across the world. Today, internet use, emails, social networking websites such as Facebook, Twitter and Skype, desktop computers and hand held devices has become a central part of our culture and society.Therefore,the issue of digital divide cannot be ignored since there are people in the society who have limited access to the available technology.