“Africa arise” says award winner

By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana

This year’s winner of the innovating education in Africa award, Susannah Farr, says now is the time for Africa to take everything, including technology as their own initiatives. “When you give the young people a voice they will definitely impress their peers,” Farr said.

Farr was the overall winner of the VMware sponsored prize of $50 000.00 after beating a contingent of more than 40 others and some additional 11 finalists. Their model is called Goldyouth. “What we are bringing to the table is a simple solution. We believe through ICT we can scale to all communities and schools, it’s all about changing the narratives. For us technology is not the silver bullet, but it can get best practices in the hands of those that can change the world.”

She said inclusion in the education and whatever space must take into consideration those that are marginalized as well. “When we talk of inclusion it is also to talk about those that are vulnerable including those that have special needs. We have already made efforts to find ourselves in that space and we have made commitments, she added.

“A lot of people talk about hope and we know that Africa has a lot of hope, the hope lies in the accumulated excellence and the solutions that we see coming from the continent. Africa need to rise and meet her own challenges.”

The Theme for this year’s conference was “Harness the Capacity of ICT to Ensure Inclusion, Quality and Impact in Education and Training in Africa.” 

According to the event information, The Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA) states that, ICT is a major tool for ensuring universal access, quality provision and delivery, and empowerment of school graduates for meaningful personal lives, and contribution to social economic development. ICT opens up possibilities for innovation, entrepreneurship and employability; flexibility in pedagogies; beating the limitation of time and space for varied learner needs; and simply enhancing confidence and dignity of graduates at all levels.

“This education expo contributes to ‘Pan-African E-university’, an Agenda 2063 flagship project that aims to accelerate the development of human capital, science, technology and innovation through increasing access to high quality information across the continent from anywhere in the world at any time.”


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