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Group gets UK funding for tech ecosystem awareness


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The Aid for Rural Education Access Initiative has received funding from the United Kingdom government, through the Digital Access Program of the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, to execute a multifaceted initiative aimed at addressing the environmental impact of Nigeria’s expanding technology ecosystem.

According to a statement from AREAi, the project will be spearheaded through a series of activities encompassing evidence generation, knowledge management and mobilisation, incentivised capacity development, media-driven public awareness campaigns, and high-level policy advocacy initiatives.

Furthermore, the intervention aims to align technology sector producers, consumers, and stakeholders with eco-conscious practices, fostering a greener and more sustainable future for Nigeria’s digital landscape.

“This nationwide initiative, themed ‘Smart Climate Awareness, Learning, and Empowerment (SCALE) for Net Zero,’ aims to directly involve information and communications technology companies, digital startups, innovation hubs, and other crucial stakeholders in the tech ecosystem. The goal is to raise awareness about the significant environmental impact of technology and mobilise collective action to reduce digital carbon footprint.

“AREAi will spearhead a large-scale citizen engagement strategy by empowering key technology hubs across Abia, Rivers, Lagos, Kaduna, and Adamawa states, as well as the Federal Capital Territory. Collaboration with research institutions, tech startups, government agencies, and civil society organisations will be integral to implementation,” it read.

Chief Executive Officer, AREAi, Gideon Olanrewaju, buttressed that the SCALE initiative would improve eco-consciousness and drive responsible digital behaviours in the usage and maintenance of digital tools and internet devices.

In the same vein, Head of the UK Government’s Digital Access Programme and Country Adviser, Idongesit Udoh, said “This intervention represents a novel pioneering effort to leverage evidence-based, citizens-led approaches to catalyze unprecedented progress in digital sustainability awareness and supporting the progressive use of technology in a way that is environmentally responsible, socially equitable, and economically viable. Our DAP program will continue to initiate significant partnerships with local organisations to drive the UK Government’s continued support for Nigeria and its digital sector.”

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