Press release

UK Tech Company Delivers eLearning to Kenya's Marginalised Girls

17 July 2014

  • sQuid in strategic partnership with DFID
  • Project iMlango will aim to improve the learning for 25,675 marginalised girls [1]
  • Programme set up to deliver improved educational outcomes for all children and help track the impact of early child and forced marriage [2]

The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) has announced a ground-breaking strategic partnership with the private sector to deliver e-learning programmes in Kenya to thousands of marginalised girls.

Project iMlango [3] is a first-of-its-kind e-learning partnership. Working with DfID, sQuid, the smartcard and digital payments system provider has also joined forces with global satellite operator Avanti Communications, online maths tutoring provider Whizz Education and technology NGO, Camara Education. The integrated programme aims to improve learning outcomes for 25,675 marginalised girls, across 195 Kenyan primary schools.

Project iMlango uniquely addresses the cultural and financial issues that can lead to reduced school attendance and drop outs [4], with electronic attendance monitoring and conditional payments to families. At the programme’s core sits an internet learning platform, accessed via high-speed satellite broadband connectivity, where partners provide students with interactive, individualised teaching programmes.

Project iMlango delivers

  • High-speed satellite broadband connectivity to schools;
  • Personalised maths tuition with a virtual online tutor, alongside digital learning content for maths, literacy and life skills;
  • Tuition and support to teachers to use ICT in their teaching;
  • Electronic attendance monitoring with conditional payments - to incentivise families to send their daughters to school – for use with local merchants;
  • In-field capacity in IT, technology and support resources;
  • Real-time project monitoring and measurement;

  • Lynne Featherstone, International Development Minister at DFID, said:

    “Education is vital to helping improve the life chances of millions of marginalised girls and protecting them from harmful practises like child and forced marriage. Through this private sector partnership we are able to deliver innovative and cutting edge solutions that mean marginalised girls in Kenya get the education they deserve.”

    Adam Smith, Chief Executive at sQuid, commented:

    “We have been preparing the ground for Project iMlango for some time, following the successful deployment of our digital transaction platform in Kenya. Project iMlango builds on our UK education sector services and on our payments capability in Aid environments, and with the programme partners we create a true end-to-end service to tackle a really important set of issues relating to girls education.”

    The programme has been designed with the ability to measure and benchmark Project iMlango’s impact in real-time. Data includes daily attendance statistics at the whole school level for over 100,000 children [5], as well as measurement of access to the learning platform and charting each student’s individual progress over time.

    - ENDS -

    Notes to Editor

    Media Enquiries

    A Project iMlango infographic is available on request.

    For media enquiries, please contact:

    Stephen Benzikie sQuid +(0)774 0038929

    About Project iMlango

    • Project iMlango is a strategic partnership between the Department for International Development (DFID), sQuid, Avanti Communication, Whizz Education and Camara Education.
    • The project will reach 195 primary schools and aims to improve the learning outcomes for 25,675 marginalised girls in Kenya.
    • To achieve improved education and life chances for girls marginalised through poverty, Project iMlango sets out to address both the financial and social issues affecting girls that lead to reduced school attendance and drop outs from school.

    About sQuid

    • SQUIDCARD LIMITED (“sQuid”) is a UK-based, FCA certified eMoney service operator.
    • sQuid has built an end-to-end technology platform, and a supporting business model, for creating, processing and settling electronic transactions using proprietary technologies.
    • sQuid Africa operations are based in Nairobi, Kenya.
    • sQuid has deployed a successful aid management programme with SOS Children’s Villages and is approved by the Kenya Higher Education Loans Board for the distribution of bursary funds.

    1 Girls who remain in education are less likely to marry as children.

    2 One million children in Kenya regularly do not attend school; 2012/13 UNESCO Global Monitoring Report (GMR)

    3 iMlango, derived from the Swahili word, ‘mlango’ which means doorway or portal.

    4 Families play a critical role in girls both accessing and remaining in education.

    5 Calculations based on attendance of 500-600 pupils at 195 schools