Letter from Editor
Inclusive growth is a fundamental prerequisite for a developing country like India. We at Digital Empowerment Foundation believe that Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can play a very important role in helping us attain this goal.
We are happy to announce that our eNGO programme is now extending to Nigeria. On 11th March 2014, Digital Empowerment Foundation is going to organize an eNGO Workshop in Lagos, Nigeria. The Chief Guest of the event will be Mr. Amitabh Singhal, Board Member of Public Interest Registry. Programos Foundation will locally partner the workshop. At present, there are over 45,000 NGOs in Nigeria out of which majority of them do not have a proper webpage or ICT support. 105 NGOs have already registered to participate in the workshop. Under the same programme, we also conducted a one-day workshop in Imphal, Manipur, on 4th March 2014. The workshop aimed at empowering grassroots and community organization through Information Communication and Technology (ICT) and was a first of its kind in the area.
In effort to empower the backward sections of minorities, Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) and Ministry of Minority Affairs, Government of India launched 'The Minority Cyber Gram Yojana' in Chandauli, (Alwar district), Rajasthan on 19th February 2014. Chandauli with 95 percent minority population is the first village, which will benefit itself under the program. The Minster for Minority Affairs, Mr K. Rahman Khan inaugurated the country's first Minority Cyber Village.
To help the remotest areas of the country connect with the rest of the world, we launched 3 CIRCs in Alwar district last month. The CIRCs are located in Chandauli, Mungaska and Vijayamandir. These centers are supported with proper tools to act as information and communication hub and serve the basic necessities of local communities. Their primary focus is on livelihood generation, education, health, and rural development. In addition to this, our CIRC at Mungaska aims to support folk-art, theatre, music, dance and craft of local people through digital tools.
Trying to facilitate the people of Bettiah , West Champaran , we inaugurated the District Library Resource Centre (DLRC) at Maharaja Harendra Kishore District Library , in the area on 21 February 2013. The library looks at providing space and opportunities in the field of Information and Communication Technology to the visitors. The newly set up library resource centre is equipped with computer and Internet facilities. Users can now use resource centre for Internet access, printing, scanning, photocopy, download, filling online applications and various other purposes.
Last month, Digital Empowerment Foundation got a chance to visit Gudalur, Tamil Nadu to monitor the progress of "Adivasi Tea Leaf Marketing Project", an initiative of team ACCORD and one of the four winners of Vodafone Mobile for Good Award 2013. The project aims to empower Nilgiri Adivasis by implementing a mobile app for processing the orders and ingesting them into the database in a paperless workflow. The project received a grant of INR 1 million under the 'Vodafone Mobile for Good Programme' to take the project to next level for scaling up and implementation. Every year, Digital Empowerment Foundation runs this programme under mbillionth Award South Asia. The version unfolds the story of Gudalur and the remarkable progress that the area has made with the help of ICT tools over the last decade.
We at DEF look at mobile as the next, efficient development tool. Since last five years, we reach out, identify, felicitate and mentor best mobile innovations from the 8 South Asian countries through our programme mBillionth Award every year. We would like to bring to attention that we have launched the 5th mBillionth Award South Asia, on 1st March 2014. The nomination will be open from 10th March 2014. We invite all innovators, developers and practitioners within Mobile and telecom domain from all 8 South Asian countries to apply for mBillionth Award 2014.
We constantly, try to do our bit to make the country more connected and empower people at the bottom most level of the developmental pyramid.
I hope, enjoy reading about our small steps towards a better and more connected India.
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With the motto of 'Inform, Communicate and Empower,' Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) started its journey in the month of December, 2002. Based out of New Delhi and registered as not-for-profit under the "Societies Registration Act XXI of 1860, the effort at DEF has been to find sustainable Information Communication Technology (ICT) solutions including digital and new media to address digital divide in under-served and unreached regions and communities. With a non-political approach, it was founded to contribute to an enabling social and economic order in India as well as in developing societies with the need based support of ICT tools and means. With ground work since 2003, DEF has reached over 22 States and 8 countries.
DIGITAL EMPOWERMENT FOUNDATION
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