Information and Communication Technology
History and Background
Information Communication Technology (ICT) is a global Peace Corps (PC) initiative and all Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) are encouraged to enhance their projects and partnerships with ICT. In Ghana, PCVs have been harnessing emerging technology to assist with development issues for almost 50 years. ICT is also emphasized with specific objectives under PC – Ghana Education Program and the first ICT teacher group arrived in 2004.
The ICT Committee, called the "ICT Think Tank", is made up of one PCV representative from each sector and the ICT Coordinator. They are charged with promoting ICT education throughout all of PC – Ghana program sectors. Their responsibilities are to:
- Act as a link to outside (human and material) resources and information.
- Collect, polish, and distribute existing ICT resources (software, lesson plans, teaching and learning materials, e-books, exams, tutorials, etc).
- Train PCVs in ICT skills during official training events and informal support channels.
- Research and develop new resources.
- Help improve and develop the capacity of the Information Resource Center (IRC) located in the Peace Corps main office.
- Assist staff in monitoring and evaluation (M&E), collecting baseline data; tracking progress; and assisting with the annual ICT initiative report.
The ICT Coordinator is a PCV, normally in the PC Ghana Education Program, who oversees the logistics and operations of the ICT committee. The ICT Coordinator serves as the ICT point of contact for the PC – Ghana staff and ensures that information is disseminated among PCVs, PC Staff, and ICT partners. The coordinator also plans, organizes and presides over meetings with the ICT Think Tank.
The ICT Advisor is a Peace Corps staff member who provides guidance and support to the ICT committee and all PCVs. The ICT Advisor helps identify local and national partners to further Peace Corps' ICT efforts and ensures integration of ICT across all program sectors. The ICT Advisor provides, resource, technical and general support for volunteers on issues relating to ICT. The ICT advisor collates and compiles agency initiative reports and serves as the link between volunteers the Administration on ICT related issues.
ICT Program Implementation
The geographical distribution of PCVs enables Peace Corps to conduct ICT activities in all 10 regions of Ghana. Some recent PCV accomplishments in ICT:
- Training of over 5000 Ghanaian youth and adults in basic computer skills.
- Setting up of ICT Laboratories and provision of computers to schools and communities.
- Linking communities with internet services.
- Establishing an ICT wiki-website for information exchange.
- Developing software to help schools better develop schedules
- Launching a multi-media, community outreach campaign to promote awareness and prevention of HIV/AIDS in rural communities.)
- Broadcasting program information about nutrition and the environment on the radio.
- The use of social internet sites and personal blogs to share stories and images of Ghana.
Whether volunteers are working in the country or in a city; whether they're working on beekeeping or in a school, it's truly a profound experience to become part of another culture." Joe Dodson Current Volunteer in Ghana