Refugee Open Tech Training and Retraining Concepts for Adjumani

Refugee Open Tech Training and Retraining Concepts for Adjumani
#ASKnet and The Youth Empowerment Foundation

Uganda is hosting a vast number of refugees from South Sudan that have flowed into the country over the past years as people flee civil war, severe food shortages and the consequent collapse of economy and opportunity for self-determination. A single settlement in the Adjumani district on the South Sudan border is home to nearly 285,000 according to the statistics from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR, August 2016), with the total number of refugees forced to flee their country since the war erupted in 2013 hitting close to two million (this, on top of the many who remain internally displaced).

As a result of the conflict, most refugees have lost their sources of income and access to quality education leading to a further break-down of community dynamics, the inability for them to support their families or contribute to the building of the communities hosting them. Beginning in 2016, supported by the r0g_agency for open culture and critical transformation (Berlin) and icebauhaus (Weimar), a number of young South Sudanese youths, some of whom are now refugees joined a series of Training of Trainers (TOT) workshops in open tech skills and methodologies to explore the basics of electricity, open source, up-cycling and DIY culture.

This formed part of an open innovation and skills development strategy begun earlier through gatherings such as the #peacehackcamp in 2015 in Juba, South Sudan. These trainings and initiatives have resulted in the forming of an #ASKnet (Access to Skills and Knowledge) community linking a growing number of grassroots innovation hubs in South Sudan, Uganda and Kenya. To strengthen the existing yet fragile systems of education through hands-on capacity building the #ASKnet hubs encourage peer-peer training in order to strengthen self-sustainability, especially among the refugee communities.

For #IotDay, a group of these open tech pioneers, along with local peers and colleagues will get together with other refugees at the Pangirinya settlement in West Nile Region of Uganda to introduce the concepts of IoT, inspire young people through the design and building of open technology-based ‘things’ such as DIY solar chargers, and LED lights. Looking to spark discussions around the possibilities and advantages of an Internet of Things (IoT), support access to information and open knowledge the team will deploy these ideas using the tools and resources provided by the #ASKotec (Access to Skill and Knowledge - Open Tech Emergency Case) they helped develop through their TOT training workshops. #ASKotec is designed to work as a mobile trainer ‘s set to tackle basic field challenges when it comes to Open Tech and Open Source Hardware innovation, education and repairing wherever needed.

Providing Access to Skills and Knowledge with over 70 elements including tools, booklets, electronic materials, a simple Linux laptop and powerful knowledge resources such as the HyracBox offline server #ASKotec can become an important multi-functional IoT toolkit giving innovators, aspiring makers and entrepreneurs in areas with extremely low infrastructure and technical resources a new point of entrance to valuable life skills. Using #ASKotec on #IotDay for demos, building things, exploring hands-on technology the group hopes not only to share their skills and knowledge but also to connect with and explore the world of IoT that this global event can bring.

On International #IoTday, 9th of April, 2019, together with our regional #ASKnet partners, we are targeting over 20 young talented refugees to benefit from this training. Please join us online, and support us further by making a donation to the development of the #ASKotec open tech skills training and resource system.


YEF – Youth Empowerment Foundation
#IoTday #ASKotec #ASKnet #opentech #openculture #standwithrefugees
@platformafrica @council_IoT @intertwilight @hyractech

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