Rota, a core programme of the Education Above All Foundation, hosted an appreciation ceremony and dinner, at the Hamad Bin Khalifa University Student Centre recently to honour volunteers, and ‘Digital Champions’ of the Better Connections programme.
Launched in 2014 by the Ministry of Transport and Communications and Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs, the Better Connections programme gives employers of migrant workers a practical framework for providing access to information and communication technology (ICT) tools.
It is a phased initiative to enable labourers with little or no ICT skills to participate fully in Qatar’s digital society.
An online survey conducted by Rota revealed that ‘Digital Champions’ attending the training had significantly improved awareness of their rights and of safety measures (76% and 69% respectively).
The results have also shown remarkable improvement in workers’ awareness on living in Qatar (45%), using ICT for entertainment (44%), and to communicate for work purposes (33%).
The survey results have also shown that 79% of the workers selected to be ‘Digital Champions’ feel strongly confident in using ICT equipment, software and the Internet. This percentage has increased to 92% after the training.
Since Rota joined the Better Connections programme in April 2015, more than 180 volunteers from the local community have been trained to educate workers in various locations in Qatar. The volunteers have helped various companies in Qatar to set up computer rooms in their accommodation, and have also trained more than 1,000 ‘Digital Champions’ as part of the social development initiative.These ‘Digital Champions’ have been trained and empowered to help their peers improve their ICT knowledge and skills.
During the appreciation ceremony, 135 volunteers and 600 ‘Digital Champions’ from 17 companies were awarded certificates of appreciation. Mohammed al-Naama, acting executive director, Rota said, “The Better Connections programme is one of the most successful projects Rota has joined. It has enabled migrant workers in Qatar to keep in touch with their families back home and gain valuable ICT skills.”
Noora al-Rumaihi, communication and public relations manager at Msheireb Properties said, “We, at Msheireb Properties are proud to support this innovative initiative that aims to provide migrant workers in Qatar with vital information and communication technology equipment and skills to improve their work conditions. Through this continuous partnership with Rota, we reiterate our commitment to accomplish progress in all sectors of social development.”
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