Ooredoo Myanmar has announced the growth in internet usage brought about by the Beyond Access Myanmar Program. The Beyond Access Myanmar project aims to support Myanmar’s libraries to serve more people with critical information and services. The program saw a total increase of 117,472 people accessing the internet for the first time and nearly 9,500 people regularly using tablets/laptops at libraries in rural and peri-urban areas within a six-month timeframe.
These figures are a direct result of Ooredoo Myanmar providing internet connectivity to 150 libraries since December 2018 and its latest contribution of 166 laptops. Within the last 6 months (December 2018 - June 2019), Ooredoo’s support for digital libraries have brought significant impact to local communities.
As of June, the program outcome revealed that Ooredoo’s digital libraries were used by 43% of its visitors to access news and look up learning opportunities. Among the visitors, 39% sought to improve their technical skills and 18% of people did job searches and applied for jobs during their visit.
The libraries have attracted and motivated more than 63,000 people to visit and improve their digital literacy skills. Over 4,200 people who visited participated in training workshops to learn how to use the internet and improve their digital skills.
U Tint Naing Htut, Head of Corporate Communications of Ooredoo Myanmar said, ”During the past six months, the number of first-time users has more than doubled in comparison to the last 5 years. This demonstrates that people are trying to catch up with the digital age. Our efforts are on the right track and are enabling people’s digital literacy through connectivity to the internet at digital libraries across the country. People in these communities now have greater access to information online and opportunities to learn digital skills through which they can gain knowledge and expand their horizon.”
Ooredoo Myanmar and Myanmar Book Aids and Preservation Foundation (MBAPF) began this joint initiative in September 2014 to transform public libraries into digital community centers. Since the beginning of the program, Ooredoo has donated 539 tablets, 166 laptops and provided internet connectivity for 150 libraries across Myanmar, valued over USD 560,000. The program is proving to be a success, with over 300,000 people across rural and peri-urban areas in Myanmar having access to digital devices, 200,000 first-time internet users, and over 200,000 people having received training on how to use the internet, contributing to the building of digital literacy skills among Myanmar citizens.