Facebook has announced the launch of “My Digital World” a programme designed to equip the youth and general public across Sub-Saharan Africa with digital skills needed to navigate the digital world.
The project is a consolidation of all Facebook digital literacy programs including Safe Online with Facebook, Ilizwe Lam, and eZibo and will be offered virtually this year to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Facebook has over the years trained thousands of people on digital literacy skills and is this year preparing to train close to 20,000 participants across Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Zambia, Senegal, Cote D’Ivoire and Ethiopia on safe, responsible and beneficial usage of the digital platforms.
Phil Oduor, Policy Programs Manager for Economic Impact and Digital Literacy, Facebook said the project aims to bridge the gaping gap in digital education witnessed across Sub-Saharan Africa to enable people to navigate the digital world.
Never has it been more important to invest in, and train communities and the next generation of leaders to better understand and utilise the power of digital tools to take full advantage of what the internet has to offer.”Phil Oduor, Policy Programs Manager for Economic Impact and Digital Literacy, Facebook
The training is free and open to youths aged 13 years and above, and will also focus on teachers, parents and guardians.
The sessions commence from today June 15th, 2020, with the programme including up to 90-minutes Instructor-led live webinars featuring presentations, demos and virtual discussions.
Users will also benefit from digital marketing campaigns highlighting best practices, tips, quizzes and polls on digital literacy topics, with content delivered through Facebook and Instagram.
Modules on online safety, privacy, news and media literacy, and digital citizenship will also be offered.
Facebook is committed to the well-being of individuals and communities visiting its platforms and has invested in initiatives designed to build awareness on responsible online behaviour, critical thinking and understanding of social issues. We have instituted policies, tools, resources, partnerships, and programmes to help enable safe, responsible, and beneficial use of its platforms.
Facebook now has four digital literacy programmes in the continent. In the Safe Online with Facebook, the company joined forces with Co-Creation Hub and Junior Achievement Nigeria for the Safe Online programme, a 12-week after school workshop which was designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of online safety and digital literacy.
Last year, the programme also held four Safe Online Forums, bringing together stakeholders such as education officials, school leaders and administrators, teachers and education-focused NGOs to deliberate strategies to ensure online safety of learners in schools across the country.
In partnership with Digify Africa, Facebook launched Ilizwe Lam a digital literacy programme which offered youth communities in secondary schools and after-school programmes on how to stay safe online including, online safety, privacy, news literacy and digital citizenship skills.
It also collaborated with Asikana Network in Zambia to launch eZibo which offers youths in secondary schools and afters-chool programmes vital training around responsible social media usage, online safety, privacy, news literacy and digital citizenship skills.
The latest one is My Digital World, implemented in partnership with iEARN Kenya, to suppor teachers by providing virtual sessions with the aim of equipping them with knowledge, skills and competencies necessary to guide their learners on how to navigate the digital world responsibly and safely.