Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) is one of the less accessible provinces in Pakistan due to the lack of regular flight services and efficient road-links, as a result,it becomes difficult for products produced in GB to access the market in an manner. The remoteness of G-B as well as constant security issues lead to limited internet access, which even more isolates the inhabitants from the outside world. Due to this lack of opportunities and market access,people in G-B continue to be marginalized. With this as the background, Karakoram Area Development Organization (KADO) has joined hands with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to facilitate youth of the region to minimize their miseries. KADO i-Tech project entitled as “Enhancing Employability of Marginalized Segments in GB through IT” is being implemented with the financial assistance of the TVET Reform Support Program as part of its Fund for Innovative Training (FIT) component. The TVET Reform Support Program is co-financed by the European Union, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and the Federal Republic of Germany and administered by GIZ.
The internet has rewritten the rules of business; With this paradigm shift, the opportunities for people with expertise in information technology have never been greater. Through this project, KADO has established modern i-Tech training centers in eight locations (including one mobile unit) in G-B. These centres provide skill based short trainings in information technology, freelancing and alternate energy solution for youth between the age limit of 18 to 38 years and marginalized segments of the society (female, physically challenged, ultra poor and disaster effected). Due to the remoteness and non-availability of Internet service at several locations in GB, we are providing fast and reliable Internet connectivity to the public through satellite internet downlink (VSAT) in our centers. Our iTech training centers are powered by renewable/alternative energy sources, such as solar power and hydroelectricity and power efficient IT equipments including laptops for trainees.
As many as 3000 beneficiaries will be trained in various ICT courses with special focus on women, and link them with online earning opportunities to enable them to earn their livelihood by selling their skills on the internet based job market to get hands on experience in the field. 100 youth will be sent to online earning companies working in down cities as “Interns” for one month each with stipend to facilitate their travelling and leaving. Seven Business Incubation Centers will be setup with each training centers to facilitate the graduated trainees to start their earnings after the trainings.