Ericsson and DFID launch girls' education initiative in Myanmar

Ericsson and the UK Department for International Development (DFID) have joined forces to support girls' education in Myanmar.

The initiative aims to improve access to the internet, deliver teacher training, and enable students to experience a 21st century education.

Both partners have committed to supporting education in Myanmar as a means of addressing the current global crisis in education recognising that this will have positive impacts on the health and wellbeing of girls as well as on their families and communities.

DFID is providing approximately £3.7 million in funding which will be matched by the partners through cash and in-kind contributions. The program will allow up to 50 secondary schools to be connected to the internet through mobile broadband.

The initiative will also deliver a comprehensive in-service professional development program for teachers, as well as a specific educational program for students using child-friendly computing solutions to improve literacy and numeracy amongst the female student population.

Up to 600 scholarships will also be provided to marginalised girls, enabling them to stay in school and complete their secondary education. In total, more than 14,000 marginalised girls are expected to benefit from improved learning outcomes through this initiative.

Justine Greening, International Development Secretary, says: "This initiative capitalises on the business and technological expertise of Ericsson so that thousands of girls in Myanmar can realise their full potential and build a better future for themselves and those around them. Through better access to the internet, scholarships and continuous improvement for teachers, we are giving girls the chance to receive a modern secondary education that would otherwise not be available to them."

Elaine Weidman-Grunewald, Vice President of Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility at Ericsson, says: "This is our first large scale engagement with a national development agency, and we believe public private partnerships like this can bring scale and impact that would be difficult to achieve by any one partner alone. It is also an incredible opportunity for Myanmar, a country undergoing rapid social and economic change, to leapfrog into a 21st Century education and become a part of the Networked Society."

The students of Myanmar will join more than 40,000 students that have already benefited from access to quality educational resources through Connect To Learn, the global education initiative founded by Ericsson, the Earth Institute at Columbia University and Millennium Promise.


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