Through the partnership, Liquid will share anonymized data to support Giga’s work to map the location and connectivity status of school in Africa. Furthermore, the tech giant, formerly known as Liquid Telecom, will also share information with Giga, a venture of UNICEF and International Telecommunication Union aimed at making access to the internet among young people a reality, about schoo’s proximity to telecoms infrastructure, with the hope of ultimately helping develop a connectivity monitoring platform.
The resulting information will provide a basis for better targeted investment to connect s school, including those in remote areas.
The partnership will initially focus on Kenya but will aim to incorporate other Liquid markets over time, including South Africa, Zambia, Botswana, Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Rwanda.
“This partnership with Liquid will allow our Giga team to gain a deeper understanding of the connectivity landscape in Kenya and across Africa,” said Thomas Davin, Director, Office of Innovation at UNICEF. “That knowledge will help UNICEF to get more schools online, giving children access to the opportunities they need to flourish.”
Ben Roberts, Group Chief Technology and Innovation Officer at Liquid Intelligent Technologies, said, “The Giga Initiative from UNICEF and ITU echoes Liquid’s sentiment of creating a digitally resilient economy in Kenya and Africa at large.”
He added: “There is no better place to start than our schools that shape the minds of our children, thereby securing our future. Through our expertise in the digital and telecom landscape, we will support UNICEF in its endeavour to map school connectivity data across Kenya by providing real-time figures to measure impact. This initiative also reiterates the vision of our parent company – Cassava Technologies, of creating a digitally connected continent that leaves no African behind.”
Around half of the world’s population still has no meaningful access to the Internet. UNICEF and Liquid are committed to addressing this digital divide, which has widened during the COVID-19 pandemic. Giga has already mapped over 1 million schools and their connectivity around the world and has connected over 3,000 schools.
Liquid has connected 4,000 schools to internet across Africa. The company aspires to continue empowering schools with digital technology and has mapped 150, 000 schools through the continent. A public record of this data compilation can be accessed here.
*For more courageous stories on what corporate companies across the African continent are doing to empower communities, visit the NOWinSA/EmpowerSA page regularly!