Sarawak State Library’s Pandei programme wins Unesco literacy prize

KUCHING: The Sarawak State Library’s digital empowerment programme has won a Unesco international literacy prize.

In a statement, the state library said it won the Unesco Confucius Prize for Literacy for its “People Accessible Network for Digital Empowerment and Inclusivity” (Pandei) programme.

It was one of six international recipients of the prizes, awarded in conjunction with International Literacy Day on Sept 8.

Library chairman Tan Sri Hamid Bugo, acting chief executive officer Japri Bujang Masli and information services division head Edison Ricket received the prize at an international conference on transforming literacy learning spaces held in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, on Sept 8 and 9.

The Confucius Prize, sponsored by the China government, recognises contributions to functional literacy by leveraging technological environments in support of adults in rural areas and out-of-school youth.

“With local government support, Pandei aims to help build a comprehensive support network, empowering local communities’ digital competencies and skills for building a digital-ready community,” the state library said.

It said 81,057 learners benefited from the programme from 2018 to this year, while 54 facilitators and teachers were trained through “training the trainer” activities.

Literacy programmes from Brazil and South Africa also received the prize.

Each recipient was given a medal, certificate and endowment of US$30,000 (RM136,365).

Programmes from Britain, India and the United Arab Emirates won the Unesco King Sejong Literacy Prize, sponsored by the South Korean government to recognise contributions to mother language-based literacy development.

They each received a medal, certificate and endowment of US$20,000 (RM90,910).