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Smart Axiata’s Digital Literacy and Internet Safety Pilot Program, which provided over 1,500 Cambodian high school students in the capital and two provinces with practical information on digital literacy and online safety during last year, has been recognized with the Asia Responsible Enterprise Award under the Social Empowerment category from Enterprise Asia.

Enterprise Asia is a leading non-governmental organization that aims to develop entrepreneurship in Asia, seeing it as an engine for sustainable and progressive economic and social development.

Since they were first awarded in 2009, the annual Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards have been the leading accolades for socially responsible companies across Asia, recognizing corporations that operate sustainable businesses and create positive social impacts.

The Digital Literacy and Internet Safety Pilot Program was established by Smart Axiata in partnership with global Internet giant Google and the GSMA – the global trade association for mobile network operators.

The program, supported by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MoEYS) and the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications (MPTC), was initially made available last year to students of grades 10 and 11 in schools in Phnom Penh, Kampong Cham and Kampong Chhnang.

Through the program, 1,500 high school students were trained in basic digital literacy and educated on the importance of password security, online threats and digital citizenship.

The program also featured workshops on creating good quality videos for the Internet, with videos created by the students entered into a competition in which the winners received cash prizes for their schools.

“This award is a welcome recognition of this pilot program, which we are happy to say has also been recognized as a great success by the ministries and schools we have partnered with. We will continue the program to create larger impacts on students across nine different high schools in Kampong Cham, Kampong Thom and Kampong Chhnang once the COVID-19 situation improves,” said Smart Axiata CEO Thomas Hundt.

“The coronavirus pandemic has taught us more than ever the importance of basic digital literacy for students who have needed to turn to the Internet for remote learning during the school shutdowns we saw earlier this year. And while we want more Cambodian students to use these digital literacy skills to go online, it is essential that they are taught in a clear and engaging way about not just the benefits, but also the security concerns that being online can bring,” Thomas added.

The digital literacy program is among the latest educational initiatives from Smart Axiata, who aims to be the Kingdom’s digital champion through digital education programs like the SmartEdu Scholarship, SmartEdu University Student Development Program and many more.

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