One Laptop per Child (OLPC), a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide every child in the world access to new channels of learning, sharing and self-expression, announced today that the Islamic Development Bankhas fully funded the initial distribution of 5,000 XO laptops to primary school children in the West African nation of Cameroon. The project will initially span 51 schools in six regions; planning is underway to extend the deployment across the entire country.
“We are seeing tremendous interest in OLPC throughout Africa and look forward to working with both public and private sector partners in a number of countries to launch, expand and support other initiatives in the months ahead.”
The Islamic Development Bank is a multilateral financing institution whose purpose is to foster the economic development and social progress of its 56 member countries – of which Cameroon is one. The Cameroon project represents the first time that the Islamic Development has financed an OLPC deployment.
This deployment establishes Cameroon as OLPC’s hub in francophone West Africa. A team from Cameroon’s Ministry of Education has provided training assistance to an OLPC project in Mali. Other countries in the region are expected to launch XO deployments in 2012.
“We are delighted to be working with the Islamic Development Bank on the financing of projects that support our mutual objective of fostering economic development and social progress,” said Rodrigo Arboleda, Chairman and CEO of the One Laptop per Child Association. “We are seeing tremendous interest in OLPC throughout Africa and look forward to working with both public and private sector partners in a number of countries to launch, expand and support other initiatives in the months ahead.”
Cameroon will be the first country in Africa to receive XO 1.75 laptops, which go into production in March 2012. The XO 1.75 uses the Marvell ARM-based ARMADA PXA618 SOC processor, which compared to the earlier XO 1.5, maintains performance while using only half the power. The XO 1.75 features a sunlight-readable screen and all the other features and design characteristics of the two previous versions of the XO laptop.