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The digital divide in South Africa

“Our kids all live on less than R1500 a month,” says Adri Marais, Christel House South Africa CEO. “That is $75 USD per month.The COVID-19 lockdown makes a bad situation worse. “The first thing we’re trying to do is get food to our children. Connecting with students is also a challenge. “Data becomes the problem. You need data for the students to access their lessons from home. If you have no data, you can’t have any learning.” As students stay home, providing packages of broadband data is costly. Adri estimates it will cost $15,000 to provide data plans for 250 Christel House South Africa students for two months. Every $60 can help keep a kid learning. “Then you can connect to the world because connecting to the world seems obvious, but you need information,” she says. “Every time you try to do the work we do, the stark reality of the digital divide just gets wider and wider.”     

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