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Bridging the Digital Divide: FH and Partners Launch EduLabs

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WRITTEN BY Abby Ryckman

In October 2023, Food for the Hungry (FH) launched a transformative education initiative, EduLabs, to provide accessible, technology-driven education in the Dominican Republic. These labs address the deep digital divide common among communities in poverty, paving the way for better job opportunities in the future. The effort was in partnership with Intel, the Dominican Republic’s Ministry of Education (MINERD), and more.

Enhancing Education: The Impact of EduLabs

In the Dominican Republic, there is a growing divide in access to information and communication technology (ICT). Communities in poverty struggle with limited internet connection, digital literacy, and digital devices. Consequently, these marginalized groups fall behind the rest of the country, creating an equality gap.

EduLabs works to bridge that gap, equipping over 90,000 students and adults with essential digital skills. Participants will learn digital basics like online navigation and security as well as valuable skills that will improve their employment prospects.

“EduLabs symbolizes our unwavering dedication to enhance educational opportunities in the Dominican Republic,” Rocio Cruz, FH Dominican Republic Country Director, shares, “with a special focus on the empowerment of new generations.”

Rocio Cruz sharing the importance of the EduLabs for education opportunities.
Rocio Cruz sharing the importance of the EduLabs for education opportunities.

Collaborations Made Digital Classrooms Possible

FH teamed up with a host of private and public partners to bring this vision to life, namely Intel, Geeks Without Frontiers, N50, SMART Technologies, Appliansys, and the Dominican Republic’s Ministry of Education (MINERD).

Each of these partners has the shared goal of bridging the digital divide in the Dominican Republic. This exciting educational opportunity wouldn’t have been possible without them. Intel’s Global Director of Education Ecosystem and Partnerships says, “Our commitment is to lead the way, empowering new generations with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in this new era. Together, we will forge a future where education is accessible to all.”

FH celebrates its incredible partners and what we’ve been able to accomplish together. Thousands of families in the Dominican Republic will now have access to valuable education and better job opportunities. Partnerships only make us stronger.

Strengthening Communities through Technology

In today’s digital era, students must learn technological skills to eventually thrive in higher education and many career paths. EduLabs bridges the technology gap by making labs accessible to communities with limited access to technology. It turns the tide of the technology disadvantage and sets some of the most vulnerable students up for success.

EduLabs will help ensure no student is left behind, especially children born into poverty. It’s a cost-effective, high-tech, low-footprint solution operating even in areas with limited internet access. EduLabs are bridging the digital divide in the Dominican Republic.

A student using a computer in the EduLab.
A student using a computer in the EduLab.

This launch is exciting, but many other communities still need access to vital technology. To join this effort in breaking the digital divide, strengthen communities with FH, or give a digital classroom. Students will gain the skills necessary to break the cycle of poverty in their lives.

EduLabs will keep expanding, providing more opportunities to more people. Rocio has big plans for EduLabs, sharing, “We aim to make quality education accessible to all, breaking down barriers and nurturing dreams.”


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