UNDP Kyrgyz Republic Accelerator Lab is helping BalaTech to scale impact with Digital X/ Photo: UNDP Chief Digital Office and BalaTech

 UNDP Kyrgyz Republic Accelerator Lab (AccLab Kyrgyzstan) was selected to join the first cohort of Digital X Scale Accelerator (Digital X), an innovation call from UNDP Chief Digital Office. Digital X enables successful country level UNDP solutions to expand its impact and geographic reach.

AccLab Kyrgyzstan’s joint project with its partner, “BalaTech,” was among ten most impactful projects selected from a global pool of over 180 proposals from 76 countries, which will receive funding and five months of organizational support and technical expertise. The goal is to apply cutting edge digital technology to exponentially increase impact and create momentum towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

AccLab Kyrgyzstan decided to partner with BalaTech, a learning platform which gamifies digital skills training for youngsters, to make digital learning more engaging, inclusive, and accessible

In a country where about 80% of students were estimated to not have basic competencies on tested subjects according to PISA, and with the COVID-19 exacerbating the digital divide between students in rural and urban areas, partnering with UNDP enables BalaTech to scale its impact in promoting digital and educational inclusivity.

So far, the app has reached over 15,000 school-age children in five countries. 78% of users in Kyrgyzstan were from rural areas where there is limited access to formal education. Best of all, the app boasts a 33% program completion rate, much higher than the global e-learning program completion rate of 3%.

Within the Digital X program, AccLab Kyrgyzstan will work with BalaTech to organise “2021 International Programming Olympiad” for 50,000 youngsters in the wider CIS region, and in developing more learning contents and increasing student reach. Committed to the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (Quality Education), UNDP Kyrgyz Republic aims to make BalaTech one of the most inclusive e-learning platforms by engaging marginalised youngsters regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, religion, or socio-economic background.

Digital X is funded by the government of Japan as part of its COVID-19 response and recovery supplementary budget. It will support proven, ambitious digital solutions with the potential for great impact in launching their concepts in new countries, territories, or user groups. If anyone is interested in partnering, and/or exchanging innovative ideas, please feel free to contact UNDP Kyrgyz Republic Accelerator Lab by AccLab.kg@undp.org 

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