What problem are you trying to solve?
Worldwide, 1 in 3 children lacks access to quality education. Many times, the teachers are there, but no one is learning. Without access to modern teaching tools, students lack opportunity. Like most African countries, Ghana is facing problems with quality education. Besides financial needs, people mostly lack good information to meaningfully improve their lives. While access to the internet is nearly universally desired, it’s not available for the poor who need education most. Even when public computers are available, power outages and bad internet reception makes them unreliable resources. While well-connected people in big cities are thriving educationally, the extremely poor people in remote areas are left behind in their development, missing the opportunity to be self-reliant. Also, the few kids who have access to the internet on their parents’ phones mainly use it for social media and gaming, not knowing how to use it for educational purposes. Let’s keep it positive: There are solutions.
What is your solution to this problem?
Remote villages will be provided with “offline internet”: an open-source, high-quality educational tool to empower kids to learn more independently. We’ve teamed up with two initiatives: RACHEL and EVCO. RACHEL is a router that provides an offline form of wireless internet, which can be customized to suit local needs. It works independently from power grid or internet connection.First, local content will be identified in the villages by surveying their educational needs. Then we will be turning this inventory into a 200GB library of open source content from the web. E.g.: video tutorials on farming, preventive health care, language and much more. We will be using EVCO’s network of (underused) computer labs that helps us to upscale this all over Ghana. Here is where we connect the dots: Together with locals, we select the most vital content and offer training to teachers to use Rachel. It supports teachers to educate better so children will learn more on how to support their communities.
Why are you going to win The Spindle Award for Best Innovation?
We have the capability to bridge the digital divide in Ghana. Our plan not only offers a local solution it’s also scalable and adjustable to any remote village. We do this by combining two proven successful networks. We are ready to start now: More than 35 labs could be used, training 200 students each. Thousands of students each year will improve their skills in technology, math, reading, research, farming, health and much more! This can improve lives all over remote Ghana.