We had planned to donate 10 digital duplicators within this fiscal year, and those to be donated to schools were delivered to their destinations by the end of January. Subsequently, the teachers were provided with necessary training and the schools have begun to use the duplicators to copy examination papers and teaching materials. We also donated one of the machines to the Mobile Child Resource Center, which is managed by a local NGO.
Because local government schools located in the areas covered by this education support program have few experimental instruments and teaching materials for science and arithmetic, the school children do not receive hands-on experience that is necessary to more deeply understand what they learn from textbooks.
To deal with this problem, the bus for the Mobile Child Resource Center stops at a total of 150 schools located in three districts, and is equipped with teaching materials to supplement school textbooks as well as easy-to-read books such as picture books. The bus visits two schools every day, taking two months to visit all the schools. The bus is also equipped with a power generator for lights and fans, so children can spend a more comfortable time there than in their classrooms.
When the bus arrives to the school, children board it, select the books of their choice, and read them earnestly. While the bus is at the school, the members of the Resource Center also demonstrate experiments with fire or water for the children using the supplementary teaching materials, and additionally communicate the importance of studying through song and dance performances. The bus thus provides children with a unique and pleasant learning opportunity.
The bus is presently equipped with our donated digital copier, so now when the members of the Resource Center take the bus to visit the schools, the school teachers are able to use the duplicator to print and distribute copies of necessary teaching materials and examination papers and can also print the materials prepared by them. We usually install digital duplicators for use at schools, but in this case, the duplicator is used on the bus. We installed the duplicator using special devices, including a clip that firmly fixes the machine in the bus to protect against damage from bumpy roads.
The bus comes to each school only once every couple of months, but if the teachers have prepared their teaching materials and copy them using the duplicator, they can use the copies later and do not need to waste time going to a store to print copies. Also, children do not need to spend much time writing down what is written on the blackboard. We expect that the mobile digital duplicator will not only help improve the lessons provided at the schools, but the learning environment as well.
The Mobile Child Resource Center bus
Children can spend a comfortable time on the bus, which is equipped with lights and fans
Children absorbed in their reading while riding the bus
Resource Center members teaching children through the use of cards
A duplicator installed in the bus
In the second round of the program, which we started this July, we have been making preparations to donate our digital duplicators to another 10 educational institutions, in addition to those we donated to last year. According to teachers at these schools, the donated duplicators have been used very effectively to print examination papers, supplementary teaching materials and other documents.
In one of the interviews to teachers at the schools where we will donate the duplicators regarding their planned usage, an English teacher working at a girl's high school in Narsapur commented:
"Our school focuses on English education, and students are indeed very much interested in reading, listening to, and speaking the language. Local children, however, have very limited opportunities to use English in their daily lives because here in this area we have no access to TV or the Internet. I would therefore like use the duplicator that will be donated to our school to print books and newspaper articles written in English and distribute them to my students. Mastering English will eventually help children achieve their future goals and get the jobs of their choice."
At schools located in rural areas in India, where teaching materials and information are limited, proactive use of digital duplicators will help children learn more and will provide them with a wider range of options as they go toward the future. This in turn will help children to attain sufficient self-confidence and the ability to open the way to a bright future.
We have been encouraging not only the schools where we donated the duplicators but also other schools located in the surrounding neighborhoods to make effective use of the machines. As part of this effort, in October we conducted a training seminar for teachers of neighboring schools, showing them how to use the machines. Presently, the duplicators are mainly used to print examination papers and teaching materials, but in the future, children could bring what they want to print, placing the material in a box installed for this purpose. Additionally, children in higher grades could receive lessons on how to use a digital duplicator so that anyone at the school will eventually be able to use the machine easily for a wide range of purposes.
Students at one of the schools where we will donate our digital duplicators (located in Konyala)
Interview with teachers
Class given at a girl's high school in Narsapur
Training seminar held to show teachers how to use a digital duplicator
We started the Education Support Program in India in May 2011, and the activities conducted in the first round of the program, which lasted for about a year, are beginning to bring the following results:
Not all the activities, however, are showing results as initially expected. For example, there are schools where the donated digital duplicators are not fully utilized because of the lack of teachers and teaching materials, and there were some delays in the organization of the school management committee training seminars to be held under the leadership of the State government.
In light of the fact, in the second round of the program launched this July, we will further enhance cooperation with the government and NGOs supporting local education, in order to further improve the learning environment for children. As the first step, we will donate our digital duplicators to government schools selected as model schools by the Andhra Pradesh State government and also to schools managed by a local NGO to supplement education given at government schools.
We visited a government school selected as a candidate for a model school in July. The school had better equipments and supplementary teaching materials compared with other local schools, and teachers of the school were making strenuous efforts to improve education in various ways. We also visited a school (NGO managed), where classes were given to supplement those provided at government schools by the use of teaching materials that were not available at small government schools, such as an anatomical model of the human body and experimental equipment. We will donate digital duplicators to these schools having enough educational resources to utilize the machines, which will help us examine the methods to help schools make more effective use of digital duplicators in the current local educational environment. At the same time, we will encourage all the schools to which we donated digital duplicators in the first round of the program to make more effective use of the machines.
As in the first round of the program, we will implement following specific measures for teachers, children, their parents and local communities at 60 schools located in the Hathnoora Mandal zone of Medak District: activities to improve the school and local environment surrounding children and holding workshops on children's rights.
Children of a school to which we will continue to give educational support as in the first round of the program
Class given by a supplementary school managed by a local NGO
Model school: A lot of charts are posted on the classroom wall as teaching materials
Model school：There are desks and chairs in the classroom for upper graders
In the Hathnoora Mandal zone of Medak District in Andhra Pradesh State, where we have been implementing the Education Support Program, we provided local teachers with opportunities to meet by regional block and discuss how to improve the classes given to their students, during the period from March to April 2012.
At government schools located in rural and remote areas of the country, such as those in Hathnoora, the number of teachers is disproportionately small compared with that of students. Because of this, although the teachers are eager to give better education to local children, they are always too busy preparing for regular classes and examinations to create more inspiring teaching materials.
At the meetings, participating teachers shared their experiences and daily problems, discussed in groups how to improve the quality of the teaching materials used at their schools, and presented the discussion results to all participants. They also discussed how to make better use of the digital duplicator, which was installed at five of the local schools in July 2011 to improve both the quality of teaching materials and the efficiency of their work.
For a more effective use of the digital duplicators, participants made a range of proposals, including printing visual teaching materials (such as figures and charts), newspaper clippings, maps and health and hygiene-related documents for children, and printing the written notices and agendas of the school management committees and PTAs for local communities.
In order to encourage the use of the digital duplicators by nearby surrounding schools that currently do not have one, we will provide these schools with posters that give information about the machines, including not only where they are installed and how to use them but also an introduction on the Education Support Program and India's Right to Education Act.
We will continue to support the teachers, thereby helping their schools make more proactive use of the digital duplicators, which will in turn help provide children with better education across the region.
Members of Save the Children explained the purport of the meeting
Teachers discussed in groups
Proposed ideas were written down on notes
Each group's ideas were presented and shared by all
The poster of the digital duplicators which Ricoh India and Save the Children India created by collaboration
At the beginning of February 2012, before celebrating the first anniversary of the program that was launched in May 2011, members of Save the Children, local NGO and Ricoh gathered together to conduct a collaborative monitoring activity in order to check onsite progress and achievements and to discuss measures to deal with the problems identified.
First, the members visited seven of the 10 sites at which the digital duplicators were donated and asked the teachers and officers of the educational bureaus about how they were utilizing the machines, what problems they faced and what results were achieved. As a result of the interview, we were assured that the duplicators were contributing to saving time and improving educational quality at the sites through their primary use of printing examination sheets and various other teaching materials.
Before the introduction of the digital duplicators, children needed to take much time to write down questions and important points written by the teacher on the blackboard. Now, teachers can distribute prepared prints to the children, thus allowing them to allocate more time to teaching them and letting them do exercises.
Also, the duplicators have made it possible for the schools and education bureaus to share more information with a wider range of people, for example, by printing notices for children's parents, guidelines for teachers and a teacher name list. Some commented that they could now dispatch information with more confidence.
Children participating in children group activities commented that they were sharing roles for the protection of children's rights, promotion of school education, improvement of health and also for cultural activities, and that they had regular meetings to discuss problems to be solved to improve their schools, such as what to do about a roofless restroom where no water was available. The children, who have now become able to express their opinions with confidence, represent one of the great achievements made through the program.
The activities of the school management committees and children protection committees, which are key activities performed for the improvement of local schools and the local children's educational environment, are yet to be conducted at full scale and problems remain to be solved regarding the use of the donated digital duplicators. However, the collaborative members were able to confirm by monitoring that the children's local environment was being steadily improved. In order to achieve greater results by the completion of the program two years from now, we will continue conducting program activities.
A Save the Children member interviewed the school principal (left) about the digital duplicator
The members observed how teachers were using the digital duplicator
Handwritten texts were printed and distributed to children (The photo shows original text)
The girls talked to the members about the children group activities
Children having a English class outdoors
For analysis of digital duplicator use, users were asked to record the date of use, the number of prints and the printing purpose every time they used the machine
In order for local people to create a better educational environment, it is essential for local children themselves to participate in activities that improve their schools. Based on this recognition, we founded a children group, now nearly 800 children strong from 63 participating schools, and organized its activities giving members the opportunity to participate in solving local issues in the education system, such as those concerning school management, based on the understanding of the students' right to go to school and the importance of education.
In establishing this group, we held orientation meetings for children to brief them on the programs being implemented jointly by Ricoh and Save the Children as well as on the group's purpose. We also taught them about children's rights. We then asked the children to write down any problems they were facing at school, and received feedback, including "the restroom is dirty" and "we have no desks."
With this program, we will empower children through club activities and implement measures that enable children themselves to choose to participate in solving their own problems, including those concerning school management, early marriage, child labor and health care. At the same time we will help with enhancing activities of local children protection committees to protect the educational environment for children and also activities of local school management committees to implement more measures for improving the schools. Through these measures, we will support the creation of a system that enables each local community to improve their educational environment in a sustainable and independent manner while incorporating the opinions of local children.
Children group members
Orientation meeting for children
Notes provided by children facing
a range of problems
By the end of July, eight out of 10 digital duplicators planned for donation had been installed. The scheduled installation of the remaining two, including one for Medak District Education Office, had to be postponed amid disturbances caused by public strikes resulting from the local political situation. When the unrest had settled down, the much-awaited machines were installed in the two locations. On October 29, when the last units had been set up, a ceremony was held to announce the launch of the program officially and the donation of the 10 digital duplicators, inviting a host of related parties, including District Education Officer, principals of recipient schools, and representatives from the local teachers' union and local communities.
During the ceremony, representatives from each of the attending groups gave a speech. First, a representative from Save the Children talked about the significance of this program and the objective of donating digital duplicators. This was followed by an employee of Ricoh India (RID), who expressed his happiness of collaboration for supporting children's education and described the maintenance services to be offered for the donated machines.
Teachers from the recipient schools reported on the shared use of the donated machines by multiple schools in the neighboring areas for printing learning materials, test papers, and many other documents. They also emphasized the effects of being able to print large volumes of materials on improving their students' learning efficiency. An opinion was voiced that teachers and school staff were very willing to be responsible for looking after the machines.
It is encouraging to know that since the day they arrived, the donated duplicators are being fully used to help children learn more effectively at schools in Medak. We find this all the more impressive because we managed to overcome a number of challenges, including the delay of the donation ceremony (twice) and the need to protect the machines from rats (by creating large boxes to cover them). Using the donated duplicators to share information efficiently within educational support activities, which will soon be fully operational, we hope to improve the learning environment in the area.
Ceremony of launch of the program and
installation of digital duplicators
Head of Andhra Pradesh Office of
Save the Children India (left) and
a RID employee (center)
presenting the donation certificate to
Medak District Education Officer (right)
Local newspaper article covering the donation ceremony
The onsite use of digital duplicators has started in the program through which Ricoh is supporting the improvement of India's educational environment by donating digital duplicators to local schools and educational bureaus.
Ricoh has donated digital duplicators to 10 locations since July 2011 under the program, including Vaddepalli School, where about 200 children from first graders to 10th graders are learning. Ricoh donated the first digital duplicator to this school, installed it at the site, and provided the school teachers with training on how to utilize the machine appropriately.
Specifically, two employees from Ricoh India's branch in Hyderabad provided training to the school teachers. The employees explained the mechanism of the digital duplicator and provided details of easy troubleshooting methods for the practical use of the machine at the school. However, many of the teachers had never used duplicators or other office machines before and the one-and-half-hour training was not enough for them to fully understand how to make effective use of the machine. Ricoh India will therefore dispatch the employees to the school again in two months, to give the teachers additional training.
In the future, Save the Children together with local NGO will also hold workshops to discuss ideas about what information can be shared through the use of a duplicator among local communities and children toward the improvement of the local educational environment.
Delivery of the duplicator to the school
Ricoh India employees install the duplicator.
Ricoh India employees explain
the operation of the duplicator.
Teachers of the school practice
using the machine.
Following the start of the program in May 2011, kick-off meetings were held in Japan and India to confirm the purpose, targets, and future direction of the program.
In India, the rollout meeting was held on May 30 in Hyderabad, capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh where the program activities would be conducted, with the participation of members of Ricoh India (RID), Save the Children India (SCI) and of local partner NGO.
At the beginning of the meeting, SCI gave an explanation of the measures to be taken to promote compulsory education for children aged six to 14 in line with the Right to Education Act established by the Indian government in 2009. Subsequently, RID gave a demonstration to show participants how the digital duplicators to be donated to educational facilities would be used at the facilities. Finally, participants confirmed the purpose, outline, and direction of the program toward its full-scale launch.
In Japan, the kick-off meeting was held in Tokyo on June 6, attended by six members of Save the Children Japan (SCJ) and eight members of Ricoh, including those engaged in printer business and marketing operations as well as members of the CSR Office. CEO Thomas Chandy of SCI, who was visiting Japan at the time, also participated in the meeting, and participants shared the detailed action plans and aspirations toward the success of the program.
The program is fostered by a range of Ricoh Group employees, including those dealing with Ricoh products and members of the CSR Office in cooperation with Ricoh's sales company in India. We will further improve the program by enhancing communication with all those concerned, including members of Save the Children.
Rollout meeting held in Hyderabad
Demonstrating using a digital duplicator
Kick-off meeting held in Tokyo
Held with the participation of 15 members
CEO Hironobu Shibuya of SCJ (left),
CEO Thomas Chandy of SCI (center), and
General Manager Mariko Azuma of
Ricoh's CSR Office (right)
At the end of January 2011, together with staff of Save the Children, we visited the targeted area to conduct a field survey for the launch of the program. The target area is located in Medak District, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, about two hours by car from Hyderabad, the state capital.
We visited the schools and local educational bureaus where our digital duplicators would be installed and our education support program would be implemented in order to observe children's learning environment and school infrastructure. We met some children, teachers, community representatives, local governmental officials and interviewed them about the problems they faced in schools.
As a result, the following facts were identified. First, most of the local schools had no copiers or duplicators and if digital duplicators were donated to them, they would be able to share more learning materials and other documents among themselves. Second, although the school attendance rate is increasing, many children are absent from school during the busy farming season, and it is crucial to increase the awareness of the local communities, including parents of the children, about the importance of education. Based on these findings, we will fine-tune our program and make it even better.
Children studying outdoors
because of lack of classrooms
Children studying in a classroom
Children talking about problems
in their school and community
Child resource center inside
a school, which also serves
as a community center
Around the school
local governmental officials