Airtel and the United NationsChildren’s Fund – UNICEF have launched a five-year partnership in Uganda to help accelerate digital learning through connecting 100 primary and secondary government schools in marginalized communities to learning platforms.
The launch in Uganda is part of the Airtel Africa and UNICEF pan-African partnership that will benefit learners in the countries of Chad, Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.
In Uganda, 200,000 in and out of school learners are targeted. The out of school beneficiaries will benefit from the partnership through community youth centres in districts where UNICEF is implementing interventions for the most marginalized children.
The partnership aims to:
• Champion digital education advocacy to reform policies and frameworks
through data insights and the promotion of tools and platforms.
• Increase access to educational content through access without the need for
data (zero-rating) learning platforms, including Learning Passport.
• Invest in school connectivity to fast-track young people’s access to
educational resources and opportunities where Airtel Uganda will provide free of
charge access to the internet for schools that have been identified.
The partnership will see the roll-out of digital learning by connecting schools to the
internet and ensuring free access to learning platforms in Uganda and other Airtel
Africa Operating Countries.
Through this collaboration, Airtel and UNICEF are committed to leveraging
technology to promote inclusive and equitable learning opportunities in underserved
areas helping to build a brighter and more promising future for young people.
Representing the Airtel Uganda Managing Director, Manoj Murali, at the launch
event in Adjumani, the Chief Commercial Officer at Airtel Uganda, Amit Kapur said,
“UNICEF has been a principal advocate in the well-being of children and young
people, through championing initiatives that call for access to quality education,
good health, among other elements that support their upbringing.”
“As Airtel Uganda, we collaborate with other stakeholders who participate in
humanitarian activities like what UNICEF is doing, and today, we are pleased to
announce that together with UNICEF we aim to scale-up digital learning for children
across Uganda,” he added.
UNICEF was represented by the Technology for Development Manager, Patrick
Mutumbo and he said, “UNICEF’s partnership with Airtel Africa to expand access to
digital learning is an equalizer in supporting the needs of every child in Uganda. The
existing digital divide denies the most marginalized children equal access to
education. It leaves children, particularly girls from the poorest households and
rural communities further behind, with little opportunity to catch up with peers in
urban settings in Uganda.”
As a key service provider in the telecommunications space, Airtel Uganda has built
a 100% 4G network that covers the whole country, and through teaming up with
partners like UNICEF, a 5-year partnership which is part of Airtel’s long-term
commitment to building Uganda’s next important human resources has been
The partnership also seeks to champion digital education advocacy to reform
policies and frameworks through data insights and the promotion of tools and
platforms. Beyond digital learning, the Airtel Cares program supports
transformative initiatives in health, agriculture, and education to reduce the burden
of inequality in Uganda. Initiatives in maternal health, supporting the fight against
HIV/AIDS, Sickle Cells and Fistula are some of the other interventions.
“The launch of this initiative is a highlight of UNICEF’s commitment to every child’s
education,” Mutumbo stated.
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