Solomon Islands : People First Network & the Distance Learning Centres Project

People First Network (PFnet) is a rural networking project that promotes rural development and peace building by enabling affordable and sustainable rural connectivity and facilitating information exchange between stakeholders and communities across the Solomon Islands. It has established a growing rural communications system based on wireless email networking, in the HF band, and deployed with full community ownership.

Through partnerships at all levels, PFnet demonstrates sustainable solutions to the digital divide whilst also working at policy level towards an enabling environment for ICT. The rural Solomon Islands are made up of 850 islands, 400,000 people, few roads and telephones, and little electricity so the issue of communication is complex. Therefore PFnet is supporting IT integration of least developed countries into the Information Society across all sectors and providing 'digital content' & services across all eight categories of the WSA.

The Distance Learning Centres Project (DLCP) is an evolution of the People First Network funded by the European Union in the education sector. Building on PFnet's model for sustainable ICT networking in partnership with rural communities, DLCP has established learning centres based in community schools in each province and deployed a new VSAT network over which a full range of web-based learning tools, systems and resources can be applied. In line with the Ministry of Education's priorities for improving access to basic education, DLCP is providing new opportunities for rural Solomon Islands teachers, students and community across the full spectrum from basic literacy through livelihoods training and TVET to tertiary education. DLCP is a locally-relevant model for the delivery of education services in remote rural areas that can be replicated across the region.

Category: e-Inclusion
People First Network
www.peoplefirst.net.sb

Distance Learning Centres Project
www.schoolnet.net.sb


e-Inclusion
All measures supporting IT integration of least developed countries into the Information Society. Reducing the ‘digital divide’ and ‘content gap’ between technology-empowered and technology-excluded communities and groups – such as rural areas and women. Bridging society through multimedia.