The Western Cape CoLab for e-Inclusion and Social Innovation in collaboration with Suff Academy celebrated the hard work and achievements of students in Oudtshoorn and George on the 5th and 6th of June 2019, respectively. During the two ceremonies 300 certificates were awarded to participants. Recipients received certificates for courses in Digital Identity Management, e-Literacy and Mobile Technology for SME Business Support.
The ceremonies were the culmination of various digital skills training interventions implemented in the Garden Route District, where over 400 community members including youth, women and people with disabilities from under resourced environments were equipped with the necessary digital skills to participate in the digital economy. A total of 30 differently abled participants received e-literacy certificates of competence, proving that e-inclusion is possible for all members of society.
Representatives from National Government included Ms Nozipho Sihlahla from the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services (DTPS), Ms Adri Strydom, Acting National CoLab Director and Ms Victoria Tau, Marketing Officer at National Electronic Media Institute of South Africa (NEMISA). Additionally, Western Cape CoLab representatives included Director Dr Leona Craffert and Mr Jason Fortuin, Manager of Stakeholder Engagement.
Participants came out in large numbers to attend the graduation ceremony. For many, this was the first time in their lives that they had received a certificate. This ceremony marked a proud moment for them and their families.
“It takes a village to raise a child. In the same way it takes an eco-system to bridge the digital divide. As stakeholders we need to work together to achieve true social change.” said Dr Leona Craffert.
One participant noted that “There was true excitement in the air. The students looked stunning in their ball gowns and suits. There were people who never received certificates before. So this special occasion showed them that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Events like these are important to showcase our capabilities as citizens in South Africa.”
In closing, the Western Cape CoLab is contributing in our joint endeavour to bridge the digital divide by equipping citizens with the necessary digital skills to contribute and excel in the 4th Industrial Revolution.