Photo Credit: L’Art de Capter by Josiane Farand
A very successful event was recently held by Change for Children (in cooperation with Nicaragua’s Ministry of Education and local indigenous territorial governments), on Nicaragua’s Atlantic Coast to share knowledge about implementing mother-tongue, solar powered, technology-enabled education programs in remote Indigenous communities.
Through ground-breaking and unique initiatives, Change for Children’s Technology and Training for Quality Education and Equality in the Bosawas project and its Phase II scale up have shown great success. The results of the innovations have received widespread attention from the Nicaraguan Ministry of Education, researchers, and Canadian funders.
The recent collaborative knowledge-sharing event included attendees from Indigenous governments from across Nicaragua’s central and Atlantic regions, the directors from Nicaragua’s intercultural, online and bilingual universities, Nicaragua’s delegate to UNESCO, and many decision-makers from within Nicaragua’s Ministry of Education with an interest in learning more about the successful innovation and the potential to scale to improve student learning in other Indigenous school districts.
While the Indigenous communities in the BOSAWAS and on the Atlantic Coast share many challenges — including limited road and internet access, lack of electric power, limited educational resources, lack of teacher training, and poor infrastructure — the event also included opportunities to share and to celebrate the unique cultural traditions among the group gathered!
This event was the first of its kind to be held in Nicaragua, and the Indigenous territorial government of Alto Wangky was proud to share strong stories of success and resilience from teachers and students in their territory. Media attention was received with reporters interested to understand how such strong results were achieved by our project in the areas of bilingual education, improved attendance, improved performance, gender equality, and sustainability in such a remote area with many barriers to education.
Teachers who participated in the projects shared their experiences, their confidence in the technology as a tool to improve the quality of education received by remote students, and the hope they hold for extending the reach into other Indigenous regions to better equip students for futures and goals that include university education.
Representatives from generous project funder, the 60 Million Girls Foundation, were also in attendance, and we acknowledge the generous support of the Fund for Innovation and Transformation and the government of Canada for their support of this ground-breaking event.
We look forward to continuing to work with Indigenous governments to further scale the success of our projects to extend the reach of education.