In remote areas of Africa, there aren’t always schools nearby, let alone ones equipped for teaching digital literacy. An alternative is to take digital education to such remote locations. The DigiTruck is a fully equipped solar-powered mobile digital classroom that can do just that.
In simple terms, the DigiTruck is really just a 40-ft (12.2-m) shipping container on a trailer. Where we’ve seen shipping containers used to construct classrooms in Africa before, such as in Cape Town and Malawi, the DigiTruck is designed to be both mobile and to operate off-grid.
“More than 75 percent of the population in Africa live in rural communities where infrastructure presents a huge barrier,” says founder and managing director of Close the Gap Olivier Vanden Eynde. “Modern information and communication technologies, coupled with solar-powered solutions like the DigiTruck, are able to help bridge this digital divide and to bring quality training and education to remote communities.”
Run by the digital literacy non-profit Close the Gap, in partnership with Arrow Electronics and Hoops of Hope, the DigiTruck project began in January last year with the construction of the first truck. The truck can accommodate up to 18 students at a time and is equipped with refurbished IT equipment, including 20 fully configured laptops, an LED screen, a printer and two routers.