Orange Foundation in CSI mood this December
By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana
The local chapter of the Orange Foundation continues to play Father Christmas this season of giving, with the organisation donating to two local entities across the country. Hope Worldwide Botswana (HwwB) becomes the second beneficiaries of the Orange Foundation Women’s Digital Centres; this program aims to achieve digital inclusion by teaching underprivileged women to use digital tools. Next, the Foundation will be attending to its Orange Foundation Digital Schools Programme, at a The ceremony, which is to be officiated by Hon Minister of Basic Education, Hon Assistant Minister of Local Government and Rural Development as well as Orange Foundation Group Executives and will be held at Mmanoko Primary School on November 20th.
A commentator at the handover said:“The world is continuously advancing when it comes to technology and the digital age, therefore it is important that irrespective of gender group, the availability of learning materials should be easily accessible to everyone interested. It is against this backdrop that the Orange Foundation Botswana in collaboration with Project Concern International (PCI), Botswana recently launched its second Women’s Digital Centre in Molepolole. The Centre was established with the sole aim of increasing the employability and financial independence of women, as well as increases the role of women in the development process.”
Speaking at the handover ceremony which was held at Mme Thari Business Centre in Molepolole, Orange Botswana’s Chief Executive Officer Dr Patrick Benon noted that HwwB was the second local organization to benefit from the Women’s Digital Centers program after the first one was launched in Ghanzi earlier this year. He said that through this programme, they hope to ensure continuous inclusion of women in the digital world as the programme empowers the girl-child and reduces economic vulnerability of women with training in digital technology.
“I hope and believe that by digitizing this centre, we will help the women in this programme to improve the conditions of their lives, to be inspired and empowered, and that those already in business will be able to improve in managing their businesses as well as inspire others to start their own businesses,” he said
The Orange Foundation Group Executive Director, Ms Françoise Cosson noted that through this programme, the Orange Foundation will contribute significantly to the empowerment of local women and girls. “Our aim is not only to provide women with education, but also to help them become financially independent. Through these Digital Centres we want to give them the power to realise their potential and to enable them to fully participate socially and economically in the society,” she said.
She added “The digital centres are tailor made to offer basic courses based on the specific needs of women supported by digital tools, thereby promoting digital inclusion”. Management skills and the use of basic computer software will be taught to also increase the employability and managerial skills of the women. She further stated that the programme is designed to be a cost effective social and economic improvement initiative with organized beneficiaries who will be taught how to manage their finances and generate new income streams.
So far, over a 100 women from Molepolole and its surrounding areas are expected to use the Centre which has learning modules, and the technological knowledge of these groups are also expected to be enhanced through the use of the Centre. The Centre received 20 tablets, 10 laptops, 120 USB key rings, a printer, a projector and a screen as well as chargers for all the donated devices.
Mmanoko village where the schools handover will take place, is 30 Km away from Gaborone just before Molepolole.