“Teachers Talking” ICT Skills for Teachers in Rural Agricultural communities in Kenya – Computer Literacy Training for Teachers – A Proven Practical Approach

SUMMARY

Empower teachers to enter into informed debate and influence policy on ICT for development in rural agricultural communities in Kenya. They are opinion leaders, 98% are farmers and agribusiness men.

ESTIMATED COST: $23810
LOCATION(S): General

1.0 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Project Title:

“Teachers Talking” "ICT Skills for Teachers, Students and Communities in Agricultural Rural Kenya – Computer Literacy Training for Teachers – A Proven Practical Approach".

Empower and enable teacher-farmer to enter into informed debate and to influence policy regarding use of ICT in education, investment and development in rural agricultural communities in Kangundo, Kenya. About 98% of teachers in these rural community are farmers or practice agribusiness.

Purpose of Grant:

The most important thing is this grant will facilitated a step forward toward achieving our big picture goal, it will continue the Teacher Talking project that started in Fantsuam Foundation in Nigeria, replicated to Kangundo, Kenya and influenced the Kenyan Government open the first pilot pasha centre in Kangundo. An initiative that falls under the Kenya ICT Board's Digital Villages Project (DVP) also known as "Pasha Centers" (pasha means 'to inform' in Swahili). The Kangundo Pilot Pasha Centre is the first of six centers to be connected to the internet.See more information at http://newsroom.cisco.com/dlls/2009/prod_080409.html

Our plan is to establish a central rural teacher-farmer training and information access point within the Kangundo pasha center with basic information and communication technology infrastructure, training capacity and support for 36 teacher-farmers, 6 recruited from each of the 6 wards in Kangundo District and later establish 6 small training and information access points in each ward. These trainees will coordinate and oversee future training and information access supported through our initial TT supporter Commonwealth of Learning (COL) open education resources in Agriculture, that will empower teachers-farmers to enter into informed debate and influence policy regarding agricultural production, processing and agribusiness investment projects that will be different from conventional methods (traditional agriculture) that have become incapable of delivering the solutions of feeding our massive population - and simultaneously providing good health, clean environment and improving life expectancy.

Grant request amount: US $ 23,810

Target beneficiaries:

The 98% of Rural Teachers and their communities that practice agriculture or agribusiness in Kangundo, Kenya

Project Location:

Kangundo, Eastern Province, Republic of Kenya.

Partners:

  1. Commonwealth of Learning (COL) http://www.col.org
  2. VSO Jitolee http://www.vsojitolee.org
  3. Kabissa http://www.kabissa.org
  4. Dadamac
  5. Fantsuam Foundation http://fantsuam.org
  6. Kangundo Pasha Centre
  7. Kenya ICT Trust Fund – Kenya e-schools program [email protected]

Name of Applicant and Contact Person:

David Nzainga Mutua,

A former VSO Volunteer, VSO is the world's leading independent international development organization that works through volunteers to fight poverty in developing countries for more information see http://www.vso.org.uk

Contact:

8173 Meeting Street Apt’ 108

West Chester OH 45069 USA

Phone: + 1 513 237 5911

Email: [email protected]

2.0 INTRODUCTION

Brief Description of the project implementing institution/organization

This initiative is due to efforts by David Mutua a former VSO volunteer and now the initiator/founder of Center for African Learning and Development (CALD).

Centre for African Learning and Development – CALD Kenya is a Trust that was established in 2008 and based in Kenya that promotes ICT – enabled learning/education, investment and development through sharing and building information and knowledge in Peri- urban and Rural Kenyan Communities.

David, served as a volunteer project manager assigned to oversee the development of projects program for a VSO partner organization in Nigeria – Oke – Ogun Community Development Network in Nigeria and later as a full time Project Manager with another VSO partner Fantsuam Foundation http://www.fantsuam.org for 5 years collectively. While working with these two organizations on community development initiatives in Nigeria and Africa, he established the Ago – Are community information centre and Fantsuam Knowledge center, he developed and managed Answering Farmers’ Needs in Nigeria: A demand –driven information system for life-long learning and improved food and livelihood security, Solar cooking and use of videos as Open and Distance Learning tool, microfinance, fish farming, Zinnet, Gaiya Gender &HIV/AIDS Volunteering and Teachers Talking projects.

In August 2006, David returned back to Kenya and started working towards sharing his earned skills and experiences by replicating some of the project ideas that would apply there. He approached VSO Jitolee Global Education and Advocacy Program to support visits and meetings for a baseline survey activities, the result from the survey earned another support from Commonwealth of Learning Canada for the COL PROTEIN funding and Pam McLean of Dadamac UK, the Teachers Talking course designer and developer to replicate Teachers Talking in Kangundo district, a rural community in eastern part of Kenya, about 70 kilometers east of Nairobi the capital city of Kenya.

David organized a five day training and invited Pam Mclean (the TT designer and developer) to facilitate together as they had done before in Fantsuam Foundation Nigeria, 20 school teachers and 6 communities members (former teachers) were involved, the workshop was followed by six months of face to face and online monthly discussion meetings with a TT virtual learning community in Nigeria, UK and USA.

Our effort has influenced the Kenyan Government to open the first pilot pasha centre in Kangundo. An initiative that falls under the Kenya ICT Board's Digital Villages Project (DVP) also known as "Pasha Centers" (pasha means 'to inform' in Swahili). The Kangundo Pilot Pasha Centre is the first of six centers to be connected to the internet.

It was such a big disappointment when 2007 post election violence in Kenya derailed the long term follow-up we were doing after the initial TT course in Kenya.

2.1 CALD Vision

To be the leading ICT program that Promotes the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT’s) toward enhancing learning/education, Investment and development through sharing and building information and knowledge in the region

2.2 Goal

CALD – Kenya main objective is to develop sustainable Human capacity development and economic empowerment through use of modern ICT’s by developing environment or structures that enable access to timely and relevant information, formal, informal and non formal learning/education opportunities for career development, live skills acquisition and business opportunities that would enable these peri – urban and rural Kenyan communities compete globally.

2.3 Mission

The CALD program is based on a replicable model for social change in rural communities that promotes Social Entrepreneurship through three elements of development, Educational, Commercial and Social services supported through volunteerism.

The Educational element promotes quality formal, informal and realizes indigenous non formal learning that builds knowledge and skills that develops integrated governance, career and entrepreneurship opportunities, then the commercial element stems from associated commercial services, that is the essential basis for the sustainable development of social and educational services. All social and educational systems have to be paid for, and in countries where they are free at the point of delivery they are paid for through national and local taxation, which in turn is dependent on income generated through commercial sector. The approach is to develop this model on a local level, in that its commercial activities that will be subsidizing social services and education/training of sustainable income generating initiatives for the rural communities where tax systems are not well developed to pay fully for quality social and education services.

Volunteerism, history has proved that in most of our communities, the root for many developmental initiatives that have been successful is the spirit of volunteerism, from the “harambee” movement to women’s groups and the self help groups.

3.0 PROJECT BACKGROUND INFORMATION

3.1 Teachers Talking (TT), "ICT Skills for Teachers, Students and Communities in Rural Kenya – Computer Literacy Training for Teachers – A Proven Practical Approach".

Teachers Talking (TT) is an introduction to ICT (Information and Communication Technology) for teachers in rural Africa. It is an in-service training course which ran for the first time in 2004 at Fantsuam Foundation, Nigeria and later replicated in Kenya in 2008.

The “Teachers Talking” (about ICT) project has wide ranging objectives. At its simplest level it is an introduction to ICT’s, designed specifically (but not exclusively) for peri –urban and rural teachers. At another level it promotes strategies for the teachers to use that are alternatives to rote learning, but can work in the resource-poor classrooms where rote learning is often used. At another level it encourages teachers to see themselves as part of a worldwide connected community of life long learners.

However, the ultimate objective is to enable high-flying teachers to enter into informed debate and to influence policy regarding ICT in education, investment and development in rural Africa – hence the name “Teachers Talking”.

3.2 PROJECT JUSTIFICATION/RATIONALE

1. Why Teachers in Rural Kenyan Communities: - Teachers in rural communities in Kenya are opinion leaders, serving or retired lead all sectors of community development and about 98% of these rural teachers practice conventional/traditional agriculture and agribusinesses.

While teachers are experts and generous in sharing their skills and experiences that develop our great careers from generation to generation through training, human information or knowledge transfer and communication techniques, very little recognition of their efforts has been appreciated.

2. Why ICT: - Indeed, Information and Communication Technology is a subject of global "trade and development", it has and will continue to have a critical impact on global population, food, Agricultural production and general development.

3. Why Agriculture: Agriculture is man's foremost important source of food. It has helped to create a colossal market for goods and services of other economic sectors such as manufacturing and global trade. It is the fuel for gainful employment.

Therefore, empowering these community opinion leaders (Teachers) with skills on how to source and process relevant and timely information, how to communicate it and use the best and modern technology is a way of creating knowledge banks, investment and development opportunities to these information, infrastructure and financial poor communities that will enable them compete globally.

Education and learning are among the most important of all human activities and always have been the principal means of creating productive and sustainable societies. With Globalizations and the increasingly dominant role that information and knowledge play in all economies, providing quality education is becoming ever more important. At the same time, the emergence of information and knowledge as core assets for development and economic growth is widening the gap between the rich and the poor. The gap is growing between those who have access to and can manage modern information and knowledge systems and those who lack the access and ability to actively participate in the information age.

Teachers Talking is therefore a unique approach to ICT training for teachers, students and community members that are designed specifically for Rural Africa.

4.0 Project Objectives

1. To establish a central Teacher-Farmer training and information access point centre with basic information and communication technology infrastructure and capacity within the existing Kangundo Pasha Centre – the Kenya ICT Board Digital Villages Project. This will coordinate activities in the other 6 centers in each of the 6 wards in Kangundo District.

2. Recruit 36 participants from past Teachers Talking trainees and others, 6 from each of the 6 wards in Kangundo District. These will be our coordinating members for our future activities in each ward.

3. Develop a 3 months training program using the past Teachers Talking training materials and the Open and Distance Educational Resources in Agriculture and the Commonwealth Computer Navigator's Certificate (CCNC) available to us through our long working collaboration with Commonwealth of Learning.

4. Recruit a VSO volunteer who will be based at the Central Teacher-Farmers center to work with the 6 committees within each of the 6 wards in bringing in new ideas and explore funding opportunities to expand the

5. Establish 6 Teacher-Farmer training and information access point in each ward in Kangundo, these centers will be equipped with ICT infrastructure and will coordinate and facilitated future projects that arise from needs discussions within each ward.

This project will facilitate acquiring new skills and open up marketing opportunities for rural-based enterprises in Kangundo. It is a catalyst project that will generate high technology investment employments in Peri – urban and rural communities.

5.0 ADMINISTRATION AND MANAGEMENT.

5.1 Board of Trustees

CALD Kenya comprises of a Board of Trustees who are the policy-making organ of the organization. The board consists of the honorary posts of Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and a member. The Board is mandated to co-opt other members depending on the issues being discussed. Co-opted members are not permanent members of the Board, as they are required to play a particular role from time to time.

5.2 Executive Director/ Program Manager

He/she serves as the Secretary to the Board of Trustees, he/she will manage the day-to-day affairs of the proposed business, he/she will report to the Board and other stakeholders assisted by Program Coordinator.

The Executive Director will be the contact point for any external partnerships and working relationships, he will be tasked with building networks, collaborations, mobilizing for support, research and development and business expansion and development.

5.3 Program Officer

CALD Kenya plans to request for a Voluntary Service Overseas Volunteer with ICT Business development and Management skills to occupy this position, reason is to tap the ICT business and management skills and experiences from a developed country that can be shared with our local rural communities.

He/she will oversee ICT business projects development, management and budgets; he/she will work as a team with the Executive Director, Project officer and the coordinating committees.

He/She is expected to work closely with the Project Officer to train him that he can take his position after the VSO leaves, this is a sustainability strategy.

5.4 Project Officer

CALD is working with Kangundo Pasha Centre in this project in establishing a Teacher Talking coordinating help centre at the pasha centre.

He/she oversees all the technical issues of the day to day project activities and working with the selected teacher/farmers,

6.0 SUSTAINABILITY

In order to ensure the sustainability of the project the following are important.

1. Involve community leaders from the beginning to ensure ownership and participation.

2. The training program must include aspects beyond ICT for development that can help to sustain it e.g. Community information center management and sustainability strategies.

3. The training component will ensure that even after the project life, the teachers can replicate the training.

4. Government and other stakeholders would be informed about the developments and be invited to the graduation ceremony. This way there is a possibility that they would want to buy into the process.

5. The VSO volunteer recruited to this project is expected to bring in new ideas and explore other funding opportunities to carry the project to the next level, he will also be expected to train and groom the project officer to take over after him/her.

6. The central Teacher Talking center at the Kangundo Pasha center will conduct and coordinate other activities that can bring financial stability such like trainings, phone services, mobile money transfer services and other secretarial services

6.0 Proposed Budget

I. Set up of the Central Teachers Talking information access point

Cost Categories Particulars Units Unit price USD$

A) Purchase of Internet Equipment and Computers Connectivity 12 150 1,800

Server (New P4) 1 190 190

Laptop 1 450 450

Computers P3’s 6 125 750

Installation and Networking Cables and switches 60 60

B) Other Equipment TV set 1 200 200

Home Theater system 1 300 300

EPSON EX3200 SVGA Projector 1 500 500

3 in one printer 1 250 250

Still Digital Camera 1 450 450

Video Digital Camera 1 300 300

Furniture 100 100

Mobile phone 1 70 70

SubTotal: 5,420

II. Teacher Talking Training.

Cost Categories Particulars Units Unit price USD$

A) Training costs Training of 36 teachers 36 125 4,500

B) Monitoring and Evaluation 500

SubTotal: 5,000

III. Setting up of 6 training and information access points

A) Equipment and computers Computers 18 125 2,250 3 in one printers 6 125 750

Furniture 6 100 600

Mobile phone 6 70 420

Sub Total: 4,020

IV. Administration and Management.

Cost Categories Particulars Units Unit price USD$

A) Personnel

Program Officer - VSO Volunteer 12 months 370 4,440

Project officer “ 200 2,400

B) Operations cost

Transport and meetings 3 months 45 1,620

Stationary, mailing, phone calls e.t.c 910

Sub Total: 9,370

V. Contribution from ARC 12,000

VI. Contribution from other funders 11,810

VII. Contingency 5% (1,140)

GRAND TOTAL (V, VI) 23,810

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