RURAL COMMUNITY INFORMATION CENTRE (RCIC)
MOICI is the government agency mandated to spearhead the creation of an enabling environment that promotes the development of ICT including full connectivity of everyone to ICT services. Since then it continue to network with donors and international institutions to implement various initiatives that support its mandate. For example, currently it is implementing “Connect a School, Connect a Community” pilot project with the assistance of International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in three different districts (Farafeni, Brikamaba & Basse). These internet centres were set-up in one senior secondary school of the said districts. Obviously, based on their locations, they are more focus on providing information access to students than a community. To enable MOICI to actually document the best practices and come up with the right mix of model, it was decided that this pilot project – Rural Community Information Centre, be established at the heart of government centre in Mansakonko where it is accessible by government employees (including teachers, students and the). Please see Annex A. Creating local content and providing access to information and communication for everyone will optimize the huge investment of The Gambia on ACE submarine fibre cable infrastructure.
I. PROJECT OBJECTIVES
In general, this project tries to implement the “Principle of Inclusion” which states that “everyone in everywhere should be enabled to participate in and no one should be excluded from the benefits of the global information society.” In other words, the project aims to increase public access to information and improve communications with the end-view of empowering rural communities for economic development.
II. PROPOSED OUTPUTS
The project will establish a pilot Rural Community Information Centre in Mansakonko to provide integrated access and services to the deprived populace. Specifically, the proposed project outputs are:
- Operational Rural Community Information Centre (RCIC) manage by MOICI/Department of Information Services with skilled ICT technician to conduct various ICT trainings and maintenance of the facilities
- Available front-end services such as internet services, scanning, printing, photocopying, etc.
- Organized and sensitized communities
- Full documentation of project implementation as major reference for possible replication of this project in the future.
III. PROPOSED OUTCOMES/BENEFITS
- Improved, affordable and extended access to the deprived communities
- Provided employment and job opportunities
- Increased ICT literacy/awareness
- Empowered communities
- Improved ICT utilization and delivery of services
- In the long term, poverty is reduced
IV. PROJECT BENEFICIARIES
- Local Government of Mansakonko
- Communities (specially students, youth & women)
- National Government
V. ALIGNMENT WITH POVERTY REDUCTION STRATEGIES
The project in various aspects supports the aspirations of Gambia’s Poverty Reduction and Strategy Paper (PRSP), particularly building capacity of youths and empowering women to play a more active role in national development, thereby responding to the calls of MDG #3 and MDG #8 (i.e. Gender equality and the empowerment of women and youth respectively).