8 February 2013

Namibia: Multichoice Resource Centre Makes a Difference

Approximately 50% of secondary schools throughout the country has been equipped with the digital satellite equipment required to access the Dstv Education Bouquet through a MultiChoice initiative.

The initiative which is part of the company's corporate social investment has seen the installation of 300 MultiChoice Resource Centres at selected schools since its launch in 2005. The investment per Resource Centre is estimated between N$8000 to N$10 000 depending on the installation costs including a flat screen television as well as the fully installed DStv system.

According to MultiChoice spokesperson, Claudia Blohm, the DStv Educational Bouquet allows learners in remote areas to experience sights and sounds from all around the world covering history, science, wildlife and new technology.

She said, the Bouquet is made available to participating schools free of charge, and comprises nine premium educational channels: The History Channel, Mindset Learn Channel, National Geographic, National Geographic Wild, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, BBC World, BBC Knowledge, and NBC.

"The Educational Bouquet diversifies the approach to teaching in a positive manner, moving towards Vision 2030 which is to introduce technology in the class room. We believe education is critical for development and through this project we show our long-term commitment to Namibia and the investment in its future," said Blohm.

In 2007, MultiChoice and the Ministry of Education entered into a strategic relationship to utilise MultiChoice's digital technology and products to enhance the learning experience of students in Namibia.

Blohm said the partnership allows participating schools to enrich the presentation of the curriculum to students. The Ministry of Education applies a strategic method to identify the schools that benefit most from the MultiChoice Resource Centre Programme.

"The MultiChoice Resource Centres are not intended to substitute a teacher's role in the classroom. On the contrary, it is a teaching resource like any other, and teachers need to bring these resources to life in the learning process. The programme has been hugely successful in many other countries in Africa and it is progressing very well in Namibia," she added.

She further said, MultiChoice has seen the immense potential in supporting schools with its Educational Bouquet as it allows learners in remote areas to experience what was previously confined to a text book.

She said over the last years, MultiChoice has received positive feedback from the schools which had this educational bouquet installed and has also been been awarded Certificates of Achievement from schools.

" For example, Okatope Junior Secondary School wrote to MultiChoice Namibia stating that, "The DStv Education Bouquet is an effective resource for the school to have as it allows our students to gain access to a world of knowledge, as well as giving them the opportunity to familiarise themselves to spoken English," she added.

"MultiChoice Africa's investment on the African continent extends beyond the creation of digital satellite platforms and merely offering home satellite television services, and that the company believes in creating sustainable relationships with stakeholders, as well as the communities in which it operates.

"Therefore, MultiChoice aims to contribute towards the development of communities, support human capital development; and contribute towards bridging the digital divide," said Blohm.

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