Today, Orange is officially opening an “Orange Digital Center” in Botswana, a digital ecosystem entirely dedicated to the development of digital skills and innovation, attended by the highest political and administrative authorities from Botswana, members of Orange Botswana board and Board members of Orange Middle East and Africa.
Following in the footsteps of Tunisia, Senegal, Ethiopia, Mali, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Egypt, Jordan, Madagascar, Morocco, and Liberia, it is in Botswana, that this 12th Orange Digital Center is inaugurated.
Spread over 390 sq. m, it brings together four strategic programs of the Orange group, namely, a coding school, a solidarity FabLab – one of the Orange Foundation’s digital manufacturing workshops, and an Orange Fab start-up accelerator, supported by Orange Ventures Africa, the investment fund.
All the programs are provided free-of charge and open to everyone. They range from digital training for young people, 90% of which are practical, guidance for project bearers, start-up acceleration, and investment in these.
Working as a network, the Orange Digital Centers allow experiences and expertise to be shared between countries and offer a simple and inclusive approach to improve young people’s employability, encourage innovative entrepreneurship and promote the local digital ecosystem.
Officially opened today, the Orange Digital Center in Botswana is completely operational and is fully functional and capable to begin training sessions and digital events. In addition, Orange Botswana will be seeking out partnerships with some universities to establish Orange Digital Center Clubs, extensions of the coding school within the universities in the region. Thus, it will complement the education system to give as many people as possible access to new technologies and support them in using these technologies to their full extent.
Orange is committed to fulfilling its vision, which is to foster youth employability while supporting sustainable growth and the country’s digital transformation agenda. The programme is also built to advance gender equality and inclusion by promoting access for women and girls to ICT jobs.
Through digital technology, this programme focuses on the following sustainable development goals in line with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: (SDG 4) quality education, (SDG 5) gender equality, (SDG 8) decent work and economic growth, (SDG 9) industry, innovation, and infrastructure, (SDG 10) reduced inequalities and (SDG 17) partnerships for goals.
Jerome HENIQUE, CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa, says: “I am honoured to have been part of the launch of the 12th Orange Digital Center today in Botswana, which is part of a network of 32 Orange Digital Centers that will be deployed not only, in Africa and the Middle East, but also in Europe. The objective is to democratize access to digital technology to young people – with or without qualifications – giving them access to the latest technological skills to strengthen their employability and prepare them for the jobs of tomorrow.”
Nene MAIGA, CEO of Orange Botswana says: “At Orange Botswana, we are committed to digital equality. We recognize this means bold actions and big investment to change the current narrative and status quo. That is why we have made the commitment to leverage the Orange Digital Center to meet Botswana’s needs, to buttress existing efforts to address the pressing challenges of economic inequality which is often perpetuated by a lack of digital inclusion. The onus is on us all to wield positive progress, and our resolve as Orange Botswana is firm. We can and will help promote sustainable progress for all”