Ireland: Bekele Cited the Notable work of DCA Academy for Lifelong Learning at UNESCO’s Third International Conference on Learning Cities

29th September 2017, Ireland :   Sophia Bekele, Founder of the DCA Group, was among the invited speakers of  the International and August bodies of UNESCO’s Third International Conference on Learning Cities to address the importance of  Life Long learning, Entrepreneurship and Employment.

Hosted by Cllr. Tony Fitzgerald, Lord Mayor of Cork, Ireland,  the forum took place at the Cork City Hall, Concert Hall from 18 to 20 September 2017, and the opening attended by high level delegates including Mr. Richard Bruton, Minister for Education and Skills, Ireland, Mr. Ed Lee, Mayor of San Francisco, United States of America, Mr Stanley Mutumba Simataa, President of the General Conference of UNESCO, who also spoke at the official opening ceremony. Mr Kabir Shaikh, Director a.i., UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning was present and presided over the UNESCO Learning City Award Ceremony, at the Venue which was held at the Cork City Hall.

The conference gathered and invited speakers across the globe where a high number of delegates including 46 City Mayors,  Municipalities, Councillors of Education, Professors of Life Long learning, Development, Smart City and Industry experts shared their experiences over several sessions on the conference which was themed: “Global goals, local actions: Towards lifelong learning for all in 2030”.

 

Bekele @ UNESCO

“If you stop learning, you will forget what you already know” said the scripture, long ago, and I agree!

Speaking as a panelist at the session on Promoting learning for employment and entrepren eurship, Bekele said, that the Digital connectivity and IoTs play a critical role in bettering lives of the youths as it opens the door to unprecedented knowledge, employment and financial opportunities for billions of people worldwide.  
She added that lifelong Learning on sustainable Development of cities has benefits that include addressing inequalities in the various sectors of the economy, providing beneficiaries with the opportunity and know-how to pilot SMEs through entrepreneurship, enabling job creation through innovations and creativity, enabling beneficiaries to obtain employment in the formal sector. It also contributes to improved living standards from high entrepreneurial activities and builds a key feedback mechanism to for critical analytics.

DCA Group is a Kenya based organization which Bekele Founded among many others during her Entrepreneurship, including San Francisco based ventures.  Since its inception, DCA has been an advocate for the value of education, employment and entrepreneurship for the African people.  Through mission, values and goals, it has led, promoted and advanced continuous learning by setting up DCA Digital Academy to mentor youth and girls in Africa.  

 

 The DCA Digital Academy, an affiliate of The DCA Trust,

has pioneered the Pan-African Women-In-Tech initiative, Miss.Africa and successfully implemented programs that include training as well as funding startups to empower women in STEM fields.

 

Bekele emphasized that DCA Group has always believed in lifelong learning and through its programs the DCA Digital Academy provides training on various topics, all related to the Internet so as to increase Internet literacy and promote lifelong learning in Africa.   This provides the tools & skills to foster entrepreneurship & also connecting youth and women to innovation highways.  This way, Africa can be part of the foundations of a technologically aware society.   The DCA Digital Academy thus have synergy with UNESCO’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, and 16. 

While encouraging participants not to stop learning, Bekele quoted a proverb from scripture that “If you stop learning, you will forget what you already know”

Other panelists at the UNESCO forum included, Mr Kabir Shaikh, Director a.i., UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, Ms Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, Deputy Executive Director, UN-Habitat, Mr Robert J. Didham, Deputy Director, Center for Collaborative Learning for Sustainable Development, UNESCO Chair for Education for Sustainable Lifestyles among others.

You can access Ms. Bekele’s full presentation here;

Archive link: http://conta.cc/2yMs9kz

PrLog: prlog.org/12663974