Colombia is one of the most unequal countries in Latin America (GINI, World Bank), and this inequality is also reflected in the access to internet, digital skills, education and employment. The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted these inequalities. Those with less opportunities or in remote communities, are the ones that have been greatly impacted. MAKAIA will work with at-risk, vulnerable and excluded communities to develop the digital skills they need to minimize the effects of COVID-19.
COVID-19 affected communities in Colombia face barriers to access information and knowledge that could help them with receiving aid, subsidies, and with their economic and social development. Digital skills are one of these barriers. They are essential for employment, education, accessing social services and help, and understanding health messages. The lack of digital skills denies them the possibility to minimize the effects of the crisis and engage in activities that can improve their lives.
We will train young people, women, and communities at risk in digital, programming and prototyping skills using Arduino and other platforms to develop abilities and solutions. By strengthening the ability to use and create technology, they will be able to find and create opportunities, share content, collaborate, communicate, build knowledge, and solve problems. These projects aim to empower communities through the generation of new opportunities to create technology that transforms.
If we give at-risk, vulnerable and excluded communities the right skills to understand, use and create technology, information and knowledge, we will help them to overcome the immediate consequences of COVID-19, but they will also develop the skills required to make better longer-term decisions related to their health, education and economic opportunities, and will improve their living conditions. They will be prepared if a second wave or other threat affects or hits their community.