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Asante Africa Foundation

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Education Program Brings Technology and Economic Development to Africa

Oakland, CA, February 20, 2014 --(PR.com)-- Education is widely accepted as a leading instrument for promoting economic growth. For Africa, donor institutions have placed great emphasis on urban education. But they have largely neglected education in rural communities. The majority of the populace in Africa resides in rural areas. If provided access to quality education, these people can be an added means to improve economic growth and mitigate poverty and political instability in Africa.

Asante Africa Foundation launched the Technology in the Classroom Initiative to benefit learners and teachers in rural Africa. The Initiative is a partnership between Asante Africa Foundation, the respective national and local governments, and the international business community and is aimed at contributing to the improvement of education in rural areas through technological innovation. “One of the biggest barriers to learning is the lack of access to technology – computers for classrooms and infrastructure for power and Internet connectivity, especially to rural areas,” says Erna Grasz, CEO of Asante Africa Foundation. “As a result, many pupils end up being taught by staff that are unable to see them through end-of-school exams due to sub-standard facilities. In addition, taken together, these failings breed cynicism about education, with many poorer families preferring to see their children at work rather than wasting time in the classroom.”

Education is now understood to make a necessary contribution to the success of national efforts to boost productivity, competitiveness and economic growth. Education is an essential component of national policy to boost innovation and performance across economic sectors. Asante Africa Foundation has acknowledged and incorporated this understanding within its Technology in the Classroom Initiative. This Initiative highlights several roles for higher quality education under its strategic objective of building skills for growth and competitiveness. These include the provision of relevant skills to the labor market; a capacity to understand and use global knowledge in science and technology; a capability to assess existing information and generate new understanding through research; and a much closer working relationship with the productive sectors of the economy. The Plan also reaffirms the fundamental importance of expanding primary education, and of linking secondary education to a range of employment or tertiary education options. In short, a more balanced and strategic approach to human development is provided in an effort to boost the prospects for economic growth in Africa.

“Education produces both public and private benefits,” according to Grasz. “The private benefits for individuals are well established, and include better employment prospects, higher salaries, and a greater ability to save and invest. These benefits are known to result in better health and improved quality of life. The greatest public benefit is enhanced economic development and political stability. Education helps economies grow as graduates are likely to be more aware of and better able to use new technologies.” Expanding education may promote faster technological catch-up and improve a country’s ability to maximize its economic output.

Asante Africa Foundation recognizes that African countries differ significantly from one another in characteristics that influence how education may affect economic growth. For this reason Asante Africa Foundation works with national and local governments to reconsider their exclusive focus on primary education and are now reaching out to secondary and tertiary education, as the balance between poverty reduction and growth promotion is adjusted within development assistance strategies.

To learn more about how you can work with Asante Africa Foundation to empower a brighter future for Africa, contact Erna Grasz at (925) 367-5586 or egrasz@asanteafrica.org.

About Asante Africa Foundation
Asante Africa Foundation believes in the power of knowledge as the catalyst that will empower the next generation of change agents. We provide African youth with access to high quality education and the tools to apply their knowledge beyond the classroom, creating opportunities to transform Africa and the world. Asante Africa Foundation is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization with global headquarters in the U.S.A. (337 17th, Suite 217, Oakland, CA 94550). To learn more about Asante Africa Foundation or to make a tax-deductible donation, please visit us at www.asanteafrica.org or email info@asanteafrica.org.
Contact Information
Asante Africa Foundation
Erna Grasz
925-292-0245
Contact
www.asanteafrica.org

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