Airtel, UNICEF partner to connect 300,000 students to digital learning

Airtel has partnered with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) under the Reimagine Education Initiative, to connect 620 primary schools in Nigeria to digital learning over the next three months.

This partnership was announced at the MoU signing ceremony on December 2, 2022, in Lagos. It is expected to give 300,000 students access to the internet and gadgets.

“We are committing $1.3m worth of complimentary data for the two platforms and data provision for learners,” Surendran Chemmenkotil, chief executive officer and managing director of Airtel in Nigeria said.

“With this programme and partnership, we are providing both world-class education and digital inclusion for thousands of underprivileged children, Our goal is to connect, empower and transform as many children and young people as possible.”

“Twenty schools in Lagos and Kano will be connected in December 2022, while the remaining 600 schools will be concluded before the end of February 2023, complete with ultra-modern routers tablets and mobile broadband network,” Chemmenkotil added.

“The Re-imagine education project is a five-year partnership between Airtel and UNICEF to help accelerate the roll-out of digital learning by connecting schools to the internet and ensuring free access to learning platforms across 13 countries.

“By providing equal access to quality digital learning, particularly for the most vulnerable children, the partnership will help to ensure that every child reaches his/her full potential,” he said.

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Speaking also, Cristian Munduate, UNICEF’s country representative in Nigeria, said it is an important milestone and a step closer to reducing the digital divide in Nigeria.

“Quality digital learning is the fastest route to improving learning and equipping children and young people with the 21st-century skills needed to fulfil their potential and to live their dreams,” he said.

“We are delighted that Airtel Nigeria shares UNICEF’s vision and will help in driving the process to scale-up access to digital learning for children and young people across these schools,” Munduate said.

In addition, Airtel is also providing free access for any Airtel subscriber to Youth Agency Market Place (YOMA), a UNICEF digital platform for skilling, upskilling and encouraging young people’s engagement; currently, YOMA has 115,000 users in Nigeria.

This number is expected to grow with Airtel support, especially for young people living in hard-to-reach areas with no to low access to data or connectivity.