An account of the Nu 2 bn Chiphen Rigpel Project

The fourth anniversary of the Chiphen Rigpel project was held on May 15 at Taj Tashi, Thimphu.

The project is an Indo-Bhutan Friendship initiative approved by the Government of India. It is a five year ambitious human capacity building project designed to help Bhutan to have successful transition to a modern IT (Information Technology) enabled knowledge society. The project was funded by the India with amount of 2.05 bn and started on May 1, 2010 with NIIT (National Institute of Information and Technology) as an enabler. With the project more than 0.1 mn Bhutanese were trained in IT skills.

“We would like to take the lead in ‘ICTization’ but give it not as the facility to the people but the right to the people of Bhutan,” said Information and Communication Minister, D.N Dhungyel.

Indian Ambassador to Bhutan, V.P Haran said, “The project is an outstanding example of cooperation between Bhutan and India”. He added that it will prepare the citizens of Bhutan for becoming an IT enabled society.

Sharing the vision to build an ICT enabled society, Information and Communication Secretary and chairman of the Chiphen Rigpel project, Dasho Kinley Dorji said, “ICT is not about technology, it’s about people, changing the way we do things.” He added that project

The nunnery was founded by Yab enables skills, awareness, ICT literacy and expertise.

The project focused on the six major components which are enabling e-governance, empowering teachers, enhancing employability, bringing ICT to schools, reaching the unreached and managing e-waste.

The enabling e-governance aims to ensure that all the levels of civil service have the necessary knowledge and skills to fluently implement e-governance initiatives. With this component, seven E-governance training centers were established to provide necessary ICT skills to the civil service. The four special training programs in leadership imperatives for e-governance, program management, project management and operational imperatives to address all sections of the civil service were also provided.

With empowering of teachers, seven Teacher Training Centers were set up and over 5200 teachers trained. Thus, it helped the teachers to integrate ICT into the teaching and learning process.

In enhancing employability of the youths where there is need of the necessary IT skills required to enter the job market. The 16 IT learning centers were set up, four at the colleges (Sherubtse, Jigme Namgyal Polytechnic, College of Science and Technology and Gaeddu College of Business Studies), eight at the Technical Training Institutes and Zorig Chusums, three under Youth Development Fund and one at Royal instructions about how to behave.

Institute of Management. Under this component, over 19,000 youths were certified.

On the component, ICT into schools, the project has set up ICT learning centers at 168 government secondary schools in the country. The students learning in classes 7-12 were provided IT skills based on a comprehensive curriculum especially developed for the project with the help of an IT faculty provided by the project at each school.

It has also provided the school educational tools like Smart Science Stations, Geometer Sketchpads and CAL software to integrate ICT into the teaching and learning process. At present, more than 59,000 school children in classes 7-12 enrolled under the project. Since its start, it has provided IT education to more than 95,000 schoolchildren.

The reaching the unreached component which aimed to bridge the rural-urban digital divide and provide access to IT skills and education to remote and rural children set out 131 playground learning stations across the country. The uniquely designed stations system enables the children to begin with computers and encourage learning through play.

The project component on managing e-waste helped developed the manual for National e-waste management. It gave trainings on management of e-waste to different stakeholders including ministries, Thromdes and the private sector.

 

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