YTF Launches Project LLP to Transform Libraries in Nigeria

 

Youth for Technology Foundation Launches Project LLP to Transform Libraries in Nigeria

April 2015, Nigeria.   Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) has partnered with Beyond Access, a program of the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX) and funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to launch Learning and Libraries, Project LLP, in Nigeria. This project aims to improve people’s lives by increasing their opportunity to actively participate in the informational economy. The project’s activities will center on information and communications technology (ICT) access and training and empowering people to use these skills to play a role in the national economy as well-educated citizens, employees or entrepreneurs.  

In partnership with the Anambra State Library Board and the Librarians’ Registration Council of Nigeria (LRCN), Project LLP will support interest-driven and academically-oriented learning for youth by promoting the fabric of social equity, connectedness and participation through digital skills training for 500 youth, teachers, librarians and civil servants.

Despite Nigeria’s place as Africa’s largest economy and largest population, technology adoption lags behind. The 2013 Annual Socio-Economic Report: Access to Information and Communication Technology, the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics and the Central Bank of Nigeria noted that less than six percent of Nigerians have access to a computer or the Internet, and only 0.9 percent own a computer. Although Nigeria has made great strides, the national government’s emphasis on economic development has left education and libraries far behind leaving millions of Nigerians in information and knowledge limbo.

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“Libraries play a crucial role in instilling positive values, attitudes and behaviors,” said Njideka Harry, YTF’s Chief Executive. “They are a safe haven ensuring that all community members irrespective of age, gender or socio-economic background have access to information empowering them to make informed decisions. We are pleased to partner with Beyond Access to support this program in Nigeria.”

Project LLP will energize the links between digital technology, education, libraries and lifelong learning through digital literacy skills training for youth and young adults, library staff and teachers. Project LLP represents new populations and new opportunities to be served by YTF’s longstanding and recognized educational programs in digital literacy. Building on a proven foundation of digital literacy-based training, the project will use YTF’s award winning customized ICT and life skills curriculum.  

YTF Contributes to Global Mobile Learning Conversation in Paris

 

YTF Contributes to Global Mobile Learning Conversation in Paris

 

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Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) will be at the Mobile Learning Week in Paris the week of February 23 to discuss and exhibit YTF’s work with mobile technologies. This gathering is UNESCO’s flagship information and communications technology (ICT) in education event, with a theme focused on empowering women and girls.  

YTF Founder and CEO, Njideka Harry, will participate in a skills development panel, deliver a presentation and host a photo exhibition on behalf of YTF. The exhibition will demonstrate YTF’s work through pictures of women and girls that YTF has empowered to use mobile technology in entrepreneurship or in education.   Harry will be joined on the skills development panel by:

  • Moderator Patience Stephens, UN Women
  • Urvashi SahniUrvashi Sahni, Study Hall Foundation
  • Sheila Scott, IREX
  • Alexandra Tyers, GSMA

“This event hits the sweet spot for our work with mobile technology, and it is incredibly timely for the world,” said Harry. “Of the seven billion people on earth, over 6 billion have access to a working mobile device. Mobile technology is now common in areas where women are underserved and educational opportunities are limited.”  

Harry continued, “Opportunities for girls to receive education have increased over the past several decades. Despite this commendable progress, the quality of education remains unsatisfactory in many contexts. We believe use of mobile technology in education can help bridge this gap in many ways.”  

At the Mobile Learning Week, YTF will share lessons about girls as key beneficiaries and insights about program concepts. This includes STEM, accessible technologies, like mobile, skills development and mobile financial services for women.

YTF’s President & CEO is at the World Economic Forum Meetings – Jan 21- Jan 25

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YTF President, Njideka Harry, will join world leaders, around the globe at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2015 to contribute expertise on some of the world’s most pressing challenges. The World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting convenes global leaders from across business, government, international organizations, academia and civil society in Davos for strategic dialogues that map the key transformations reshaping the world.

“These are interesting times for the world. I expect this year’s conversations to be on complex issues that are of greater societal relevance; climate change, gender equality, monetary policy. I come here to engage and to meet directly with the stakeholders that have an impact on shaping trust and I’m excited to represent Africa in Davos.

Mrs. Harry will moderate a session on “Reimagining Africa’s Future” at this year’s Annual Meeting, in which she will contribute to some big ideas to boost Africa’s growth and prosperity. The goal of this session is to identify some big ideas which can be amplified at the Africa regional meeting in June.

“In another 25 years, we will have a labour force bigger than China and India combined, Mrs. Harry said. What does this mean in terms of the roadmap? What do we need to rethink? Where can we be bolder and where can we be more pragmatic? We are 8 years into the financial crises, Europe is still struggling and has pumped 1 trillion Euros to try to jumpstart their economy. The U.S. is no longer buying African oil. In fact they are on target to produce 9 million barrels a day. That’s Nigeria, Angola, Equatorial Guinea Libya combined. All the large emerging markets have now slowed down (China, India, Brazil), so basically everyone is looking to Africa as a continent”.

Mrs. Harry will also moderate a session, “Designing Out Poverty,” which will explore how design-driven innovations help put an end to extreme poverty.

25 other social entrepreneurs will contribute their thinking this year at Davos. “These social entrepreneurs are at the forefront of addressing the most pressing social and environmental challenges, ranging from inclusive employment solutions, consumer waste, education, affordable health services, and more,” said Hilde Schwab, in an article on the importance of social entrepreneurs to the Annual Meeting.

“As business and government leaders seek new, innovative solutions to many of the systemic issues they face, social entrepreneurs are called upon to provide solutions. Together with the Young Global Leaders and the Global Shapers, they highlight that global issues need entrepreneurial solutions. 

Follow updates from the Annual Meeting on Twitter, using the hashtag #wef15.

YTF wins seed grant from Women Enhancing Technology (WeTech)

3D Printing. Girls. Africa

The Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) received confirmation in December of a grant from Women Enhancing Technology (WeTech), in partnership with Google, for 3D Africa. With this funding, YTF will operate a prototyping and engineering space with 3D printing technologies to ignite a passion for STEM in Nigerian girls. 3D Africa combines programming and entrepreneurship; empowering girls as problem solvers and inventors, helping to solve the STEM gender gap in Africa. “We believe youth are future inventors and should be equipped with the tool that will allow them to tinker, create and imagine the future as they want to see it,” said Njideka Harry, CEO and founder of YTF. “At YTF, we want to inspire a generation of curios doers. This starts with young people, and it starts with girls. We are grateful for WeTech’s support to help us provide invention and entrepreneurship education in Africa utilizing 3D printing technologies.” Grant sponsors explain organizations were chosen “for their inspiring work to involve more women and girls in computer science-related opportunities.” The 3D Africa program will help girls learn and thrive, as mathematics and engineering must be applied in order to create the 3D designs (jewelry, art, small parts) that will be printed and marketed/sold for income. The technology is realized through the science, engineering, and mathematics that encompass the entire design and production process. Read more about this work via our 3D Africa Indiegogo campaign.

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YTF will be at the Women of West Africa Entrepreneurship (WoWe) Conference

Lagos, June 26 – 27, 2014. YTF will attend the Women of West Africa Entrepreneurship Conference where YTF’s President and CEO, Njideka Harry, will moderate a panel discussion: “Social entrepreneurship journey – Increasing prosperity in West Africa”. Key points included in this discussion will be:

  • Social entrepreneurship as a key to economic growth
  • Creating a sustainable impact on the society and the environment
  • Leadership skills to support social innovation
  • Accessing support networks for social enterprises

Harry will share examples of YTF’s work with the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, MasterCard and Intel to enhance women entrepreneurs business and financial capabilities using ICT.

For more information on the conference and to register to attend please visit http://www.wowenigeria.com

Some pictures from the conference. 

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Austrian economist Joseph Schumpeter defined “the entrepreneur” as the force required to drive economic progress, absent which economies would become static, structurally immobilized, and subject to decay, Harry said.

 

WOWe (491 of 738)

Esteemed Panelists… these women have, “Taken their genius, optimism and empathy and are changing the world!”, Harry said introducing the panelists.

 

WOWe (477 of 738)

Any definition of the term “social entrepreneurship” must start with the word “entrepreneurship.” The word “social” simply modifies entrepreneurship.