By Alfred Sasako
THE high tech world has come to some Solomon Islands’ students, thanks to a partnership with China’s largest information technology company, Huawei, the 9th in global revenue rankings.
Under the arrangement, Huawei has donated some 927 sets of tablets following a request by the Treasurer of the Solomon Islands-China Friendship Association (SICFA), Diana Yates, who last year requested the Telco giant to consider providing up to 300 sets for students and schools under the umbrella of SICFA.
SICFA is an NGO established in 2016 to promote friendship and cultural exchanges between the peoples of Solomon Islands and Mainland China.
Huawei responded by providing 927 sets through the new partnership with SICFA and Read SI.
READ SI is already piloting the effectiveness of the technology with Brilliant Star, a primary school on Guadalcanal, READ SI founder/director, Joyce Boykin told Island Sun earlier this week.
READ SI will be sending some of the tablets with library books to selected villages on Malaita as well. In fact, the tablets will be going to 91 villages located on Guadalcanal, in Malaita, Makira and the Western Provinces in April for Phase 3 of the National Literacy Campaign,” she said.
“We have given 20 to be used by upper primary students when they do reading class. The goal is to train people how to use this new tool and have these tablets contribute to the acquisition of practical knowledge and learning,” Mrs Boykin said.
SICFA President, Sir Thomas Chan, said Huawei’s donation is a pleasant surprise.
“We are overwhelmed by the size of the donation, which are being giving away to students and teachers including those in remote schools.
“We are very grateful to Huawei for responding positively to our request in providing the tablets, which we know would be a great help in aiding students in their learning and acquisition of practical knowledge,” Sir Thomas said.
“I would also like to record SICFA’s gratitude to each and every one including the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development, for facilitating Customs clearance of the donation.
“It’s the future of the young people of Solomon Islands that matters. I am grateful that Huawei has donated the tablets which would make an enormous contribution towards the future of Solomon Islands students who would be using the new gadgets,” he said.
Sir Thomas said the donation by Huawei was only possible through the help of the Kingdom of Tonga, which helped Solomon Islands become a Member of the Pacific-China Friendship Association (PCFA).
Solomon Islands has since established its own association, known as Solomon Islands-China Friendship Association (SICFA).
“These tablets will definitely bring the world of technology a whole lot closer to the students even in remote areas,” Sir Thomas said.