From left to right: Sofía Fernández de Mesa, representative of ProFuturo; H.E. Noel Anderson Lynch, Ambassador of Barbados to the OAS; Kim Osborne, Executive Secretary for Integral Development; Óscar León, Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Telecommunications Commission; H.E. Michael Browne, Minister of Education, Science and Technology of Antigua and Barbuda - President of the X Ministerial Meeting of Education.
The ProFuturo Programme is an initiative of Fundación Telefónica and "la Caixa". In collaboration with the OAS, it will bring technological equipment, teacher training and digital learning resources to more than 4,000 children in 17 schools of Barbados.
The launch event included the intervention of the Ambassador of Barbados to the OAS, Noel Anderson Lynch; the representative of ProFuturo, Sofía Fernández de Mesa; the Executive Secretary for Integral Development of the OAS, Kim Osborne; and the Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Telecommunications Commission, Óscar León.
Ambassador Anderson highlighted the importance of this partnership for development and educational quality in Barbados and reaffirmed the commitment of the Ministry of Education, Technological and Vocational Training with the program:
“We are very excited to partner with the ProFuturo Foundation, an organization that is committed to providing quality digital education for children in vulnerable environments. Today we want to share this experience and to welcome the implementation of the programme in our schools”
Furthermore, Sofía Fernández de Mesa expressed her gratitude to Barbados for their commitment to this collaboration and stressed the importance of expanding digital education to all students in the Americas:
“Thank you so much to Barbados for giving us the confidence to implement this programme, and for providing the necessary contributions to this public-private partnership-for making it happened”
Barbados is the second Caribbean country to welcome the ProFuturo Programme. Last June, the Ministry of Education of Guyana signed the cooperation agreement and launched the implementation of the programme in 28 schools, where more than 5,000 children will be benefitting from quality digital educational content, teacher training and technological equipment.
ICT Americas Alliance
The implementation of the ProFuturo Programme responds to the ICT Alliance 2030 signed in the Dominican Republic in 2016. This alliance, led by the Inter-American Telecommunications Commission (CITEL), seeks to globally connect 1.5 billion people by 2020; connect to the Internet to all public schools by 2030; promote digital training, developing talents for the digital economy and strengthen democratic participation through new media.
OAS Inter-American Educational Agenda
The ProFuturo Programme is a commitment to strengthening capacities in vulnerable environments, generating social, cultural and economic development for the citizens of the Caribbean, according to the three pillars of the Inter-American Educational Agenda: quality education, inclusive and with equity; strengthening of the teaching profession and comprehensive attention to early childhood.