Changemaker: Charles Falajiki
Country of Implementation: Nigeria
34 million Nigerian children are missing out of quality learning opportunities due to school closures and disruption to learning caused by COVID19. More than 70% of this population are from low-income families and remote communities who can not afford a radio, a television or a smartphone to learn online and are therefore excluded from accessing distance learning opportunities.
Charles and his colleagues decided to solve this problem and designed Digilearns, a low tech solution that delivers curriculum aligned content to small mobile devices. DigiLearns (digilearns.ng), leverages artificial intelligence in curating and delivering high-quality, government-approved and contextually-relevant learning content in form of lesson notes, past questions, gamified quizzes and revision materials via SMS/USSD to basic feature phones that does not require internet connectivity, thus offering personalized learning and mentoring support, cognitive development, and information access tools for poor and low-income learners. The learning content which is developed in-house by local teachers and approved by the Federal Ministry of Education is available in 3 of Nigeria's local languages for choice and convenience. All these functions are available via SMS/USSD to anyone, anywhere in Nigeria for free by just calling *774# on any basic mobile phone.
Digilearns, with support of the GCM Community Action Project Grant, provided zero-rated airtime support and facilitated delivery of quality educational content via SMS and USSD to 100 secondary school students in Yangoji Village. This ensured adequate preparation and revision to optimize their academic performance for easy transition to tertiary education. This solution further strengthens local access to the national curriculum and effective offline teacher support. The goal beyond being a COVID19 intervention is to spread the use of this solution across rural communities in Nigeria. For more information, visit www.digilearns.ng