UNICEF and Airtel cement their collaboration to reduce the digital divide in Gabon's education system

15 February 2023
Airtel
Fanja Saholiarisoa
Airtel Gabon Managing DirectorThomas Herbert Gutjahr with the UNICEF Representative in Gabon

Wednesday 15 February 2023: UNICEF and Airtel demonstrate their continued commitment to the 'Reimagine Education' initiative, which aims to increase digital literacy amongst children through connectivity, access to educational platforms and technology.

The signature of this agreement follows the Partnership Agreement between UNICEF and Airtel Africa, which was signed on the 26th of October 2022 and benefits 13 African countries, including Gabon.

The digital education project was launched in July 2022 at the public school of Ntoum. During the first year of the project, the focus was on laying the foundations for the digitalization of primary education and the digital transformation of the education sector.

Since then, the key actors in the Gabonese education system have made steps towards taking ownership of this new teaching approach. Online courses are currently being tested in nine pilot schools in Estuaire, Ogooué Lolo and Moyen Ogooué. The legislative and regulatory framework was validated by the National Commission for the Protection of Personal Data and then developed and adopted by the Council of Ministers. In total, 177 administrative and teaching supervisory staff, also called "digital referents", have been trained, 9 pilot schools have been equipped and more than 500 students have been taught how to use computers and tablets.

The signature of this contract demonstrates a commitment by Airtel and UNICEF to reduce the digital divide in the Gabonese education system by introducing a new model of distance learning in primary schools. It will also allow digital learning to become part of essential educational services for children and will be available in the most remote communities of the country. This is in alignment with the principles of inclusiveness and equity, thus supporting SDG 4.

UNICEF will provide technical and financial assistance to support this project. Airtel will put a total of fifty-seven (57) million dollars in cash and services towards this program over the next five (5) years. These services include the connection of schools and training centers to the internet, support for mapping to geo-reference schools, the provision of data (mega) every month during the school year in schools, and to students, administrative and teaching staff, and supporting the provision of connectivity equipment.

 

Airtel
Fanja Saholiarisoa
The whole coordination team of the "Reimagine Education" in Gabon

Media contacts

Fanja Saholiarisoa
Communication specialist
UNICEF Gabon
Tel: +241 07481029

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