Bridging Digital Divide in in Rural Areas



Wednesday 25 July, 2018

A facilitative environment to bridge the digital divide in rural areas and connecting the unconnected is the purpose of the Mobile for Good programme under which technological devices are being rolled out in rural areas and schools by the Vodafone ATH Fiji Foundation.

This was evident when 27 Talaiya Muslim Primary School students faces ignited with smiles as they, through the school, received 6 technological devices worth over $2,500 with free Wi-Fi connection for a year.

“Technological development globally and in the country is happening at a rapid pace and being one of the biggest players in the ICT industry it is our social responsibility that we ensure no one is left behind as far as access to technology is concern,” said Vodafone ATH Fiji Foundation Trustee Mr Rajnesh Prasad.

“When the school applied for assistance with technological devices and internet data we noted that the numbers of students were small and that majority of them had no to limited access to technological resources and as such we felt with this support it will make a world of difference in their learning environment,” said Prasad.

While receiving the technological devices on behalf of the school, Talaiya Muslim Primary School Head Teacher Mr Hafiz Khan said that he was very grateful for the assistance which was timely and much needed especially as the students came from rural areas.

“We realised that the students were excited when we used technology and educational videos for learning purpose but one of the challenges was to get high speed internet that would work better for us but we are now overwhelmed that the technological devices is also provided with free 4G Wi-Fi connection for a year,” said Mr Khan

Also present during the hand over were Ministry of Education Senior Education Officer (SEO) Mr Atendra Kuman and newly establish NGO Philanthropy Pacific Executive Mr Neil Maharaj through which the assistance was provided.

“We are indeed thankful to Vodafone ATH Fiji Foundation for the donation to the school as the children under the supervision of teachers will now not only be able to access a lot of educational learning materials online but also able to learn skills to use such modern technological devices,” said SEO Mr Atendra Kumar.

“The teachers will assist the students to get acquainted with these technological devices so that when they go into secondary or higher education, the students are able to easily use technology as they had been already acquainted and will surely enjoy learning,” added SEO Mr Kumar.

“It was rather joyous moment for students especially as majority of the student had never touched or used the technological device and internet,” said Philanthropy Pacific Executive Neil Maharaj.

“This is the true example of how corporate philanthropy can benefit local communities in uplift lives of rural people and with increased corporate volunteering initiatives the future will surely be exciting for Fijian people,” said Mr Maharaj.