By Alexander Nyarko Yeboah, GNA
The first Bridge Digital Library Project in Ghana has been launched in the Tema West Municipality to enhance quality education delivery.
The project, which is a collaborative effort between The Mothers of Africa and US Africa Children Fellowship (USACF), will ensure that children in Ghana with limited access to the internet could still work with internet based educational materials.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Friday on the sidelines of the launch at the Kotobabi No. 2 Primary School, Tema, the Bridge Project Director, Mr. Bob Rollins, informed that there were a lot of open source materials on the internet that could be shared at no cost, which was a good opportunity for deprived communities.
Mr. Rollins explained that there were many people who lacked access to the internet facility, but “there is another way, a lower cost way, that is to download the material from the internet into a device to bring it to where they don’t have the internet.”
He said the device “had memory and therefore was able to and a wifi hotspot, if you connect it to your phone, it feels like you are on the internet,” he said.
Mr. Rollins said such a learning tool was advantageous for young people because they were protected from the harmful aspects of the internet and only made them concentrate on the consumption of educational materials.
“So we are saying to teachers and stakeholders that here is a technology you can use to assist people with very limited resources and give them an outstanding number of resources,” he said.
In a keynote address before the launch, the President of The Mothers Of Africa, Madam Lucy Nana Ama Essuman, hinted that Information Communication Technology (ICT) addressed the many challenges facing Ghanaians.
In recounting the benefits of the digital library, Madam Essuman said “it is an undeniable fact that an enabling ICT environment was needed to enhance teaching and learning in Ghanaian schools to give better access to knowledge and innovation. This has lead to the development of initiatives such as electronic learning and digital libraries.”
She asked government to ensure that all schools acquired the facility taking into consideration the fact that some schools were more endowed.
The Municipal Director of Education for Tema West, Mr. Francis Steel, told of the enthusiasm of governments to project education which would translate into achieving Ghana’s national goals of preparing the children adequately for tomorrow.
Mr. Steel, in responding to the question of inadequate facility to support such a programme, said “we aren’t expected to get all the inputs before we start, and that there are plans to roll it out to all schools across the nation.”
In a welcoming address, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) of Tema West, Mrs Adwoa Amoako, lauded the Project by saying it had come at the right time, “As President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo is bent on promoting effectiveness and efficiency in the educational sector.”
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Mrs. Amoako informed that the provision of infrastructure and educational tools was expensive therefore the digitized tool came in handy to help advance the provision of educational materials for schools.
The MCE said Ghana had a future in education therefore prioritizing investment in that sector to ensure a fair and inclusive quality educational system to created life transforming opportunities for all was a worthy cause pursued by government.