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Virtual Launch of the Internet of Good Things (IoGT) welcomed

UNICEF, in partnership with Econet Wireless and ZiFM Stereo is launching The Internet of Good Things (IoGT) through a virtual live music show featuring Jah Prayzah, Gemma Griffiths, Tamy Moyo, Long John, Nutty O and Asaph. The event will be aired live on ZiFM Radio as well as streamed through ZiFM, UNICEF Zimbabwe and Econet Wireless Facebook Pages on Friday 5th June at 8 pm.

The IoGT features mobile-packaged content from UNICEF and partners designed to make life-saving and life-improving information available for free, even on low-end devices and basic web-enabled mobile phones.

IoGT can be accessed at https://zw.goodinternet.org

UNICEF and Econet have partnered to have the IoGT website zero-rated – meaning it is free to access for any Econet user through their mobile phones. Econet has around 13 million mobile subscribers in Zimbabwe.

While Zimbabwe has high mobile penetration, access to data is a challenge for many. The impacts on all people, particularly women and children across Zimbabwe from the rapidly escalating global COVID-19 pandemic are unprecedented and far reaching, and access to factual information is vital.

The IoGT is delivering essential information and lifesaving recommendations about diseases such as COVID-19 and Cholera, maternal health, hygiene, HIV and sexual health for adolescents, child online protection, positive parenting, education resources and more.

Providing quality education, messages and information will help children grow and develop to their full potential. It will also help mothers, fathers, other family members, frontline workers, caregivers, service providers and communities stay safe and protect the lives of children across the country.

In Zimbabwe, updated content distributed on IoGT is localized and is evolving to include content in the main languages – English, Shona and Ndebele. To date, almost 50,000 users have accessed the website and this is expected to grow.

Some of the popular sections include COVID-19 information and advice for students about the disease, as well as career advice content, and the “All In” section – a special section for adolescents.

The platform and much of the content featured was made possible with the support of UNICEF’s donors in Zimbabwe through the Health Development Fund, Child Protection Fund and Education Development Fund.

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende