Hello World Partners, CITAD, Other Organizations to Bridge Nigeria’s Digital Divide

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A UK-based non-profit organisation, Hello World has teamed up with the Association for Progressive Communications (APC), The Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD), Tizeti internet, and seven local Community Network micro-organizations to address Nigeria’s digital divide.

Katrin McMillan, CEO and Founder of Hello World, expressed her excitement about returning to Nigeria, where the idea originated. She envisions training community-based organizations to take Hello World’s designs and community-led engineering methodology to their states, adapting the model to suit local contexts.

According to her, the collaboration aims to introduce an innovative, sustainable, and community-led solution called the “Hello Hub” to close the digital gap in Nigeria.

“These solar-powered, outdoor internet kiosks with public touch-screens will be constructed, managed, and maintained by local communities, starting with Dakwa” the report indicated.

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The partnership will also focus on equipping participants with community engagement and engineering skills required to construct Hello Hubs. Through a capacity-building approach, CITAD and participating micro-organizations will be empowered to independently build and adapt Hello Hubs across Nigeria.

During the training, a Hello Hub will be constructed in real-time in the Dakwa community, providing a tangible example of the project’s potential impact. The Hub will be connected to free Tizeti internet, showcasing the practical implementation of the initiative.

Dahiru Abubakar, CITAD programme officer, in his addresss emphasized the community-driven nature of the Hello World initiative, encouraging local contributions and fostering a sense of ownership among the communities involved.

The project’s goal is not only to bridge the digital gap but also to inspire further community-led initiatives. By leveraging CITAD’s experience, APC’s influence, and Hello World’s community-led model, the collaboration aims to expand digital connectivity further across Nigeria.

Also speaking, Ismaila Shuaibu,
Chairman Dakwa Community, disclosed Hello World is about to change the lives of people in Dakwa by bringing something they have been yearning for years.

“This Hub will be maintained at all cost” Shuaibu assured.

According to the statement, with over ten years of experience, Hello World has already implemented similar projects in Uganda and Nepal, providing internet access to approximately 100,000 people worldwide through 70 Hello Hubs in Uganda and 20 in Nepal.

Highlighting the urgency of their work, the press release noted that 81% of Nigerians lack meaningful internet connection, and only 6.6% of those in rural areas have good connectivity.

Prominent figures involved in the project, including Katrin McMillan (Hello World CEO and Founder), YZ Ya’u (CITAD Executive Director), Josephine Miliza (APC Africa Policy Coordinator), and Shuaibu D. Samu (Chief of Dakwa, Community representative), are available for interviews to provide further insights into this transformative initiative, the organisers said.

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