Facilitating equality through equitable access to connectivity
At the moment, around 40% of the world population is not using the internet. The technical implications that first come to mind, like realizing connectivity in remote areas, are just the beginning of the story.
Other major obstacles preventing people from using available internet connectivity are affordability and a lack of necessary knowledge and skills. These obstacles render the available connectivity options unusable. Apprehension because of a lack of knowledge about safe internet usage is another serious obstacle.
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Facilitate access to affordable connectivity
Even though around 95% of the world population is covered by some form of connectivity, roughly 37% of the world population is still not using the internet. A substantial part of this offline population lives in the world's most vulnerable countries. In a lot of rural and remote regions of these countries, connectivity is not available or affordable. Because the circumstances vary widely, there is no need for a one-size fits all solution, but rather for equitable solutions to meet the specific needs and ensure the local capacity needed to maintain and sustain the available connectivity.
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Facilitate higher educational levels and digital literacy
The offline population is disproportionally poor, rural, uneducated, elderly, and female. For these groups, the lack of necessary knowledge and skills to use available connectivity is a big obstacle. Research shows that education levels indicate whether people are more likely to use the internet. Higher education and digital literacy levels will have a large impact on raising internet usage and bridging the digital divide.
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Facilitate privacy awareness and safe internet usage
Being aware of the potential dangers and pitfalls when doing something new has a big impact on the experience. As the beneficiaries of most of our projects are fairly new to the internet, we want to make sure they know how to use the internet safely and protect themselves and their personal information. The internet is a powerful tool to increase equality in the world, but only if things like data protection, strong passwords, trusted websites, and preventing online scamming are familiar concepts for everyone.