DOT-COM Activity: Mali CLICs- Establishing Community Learning & Information Centers in Underserved Malian Communities
Short Description: dot-ORG has established 13 Community Learning and Information Centers (CLICs) across Mali, offering a range of fee-for-use services including Internet access, development-oriented information, e-mail accounts, training in computer and Internet use and applications, desktop publishing, ICT services for local entrepreneurs and customized locally development content.
Phase/Type of Activity: Signed Award Status: Completed
Start date: May 01, 2003 End Date: September 30, 2005
Partners: Institut Africain de Gestion et de Formation
Person(s) to contact
Michael Tetelman , Acting Director
dot-ORG , Academy for Educational Development
Tel: 202 884 8856
Full Description: dot-ORG established thirteen Community Learning and Information Centers (CLICs) across Mali. The CLICs offer a range of fee-for-use services including Internet access, development-oriented information, e-mail accounts, training in computer and Internet use and applications, desktop publishing, ICT services for local entrepreneurs and customized locally development content. This content includes health, economic growth (particularly agribusiness), civil society, education, and ICTs. A variety of Malian partner institutions are hosting the CLICs, including local NGOs, teacher training centers, mayoral offices, a community school, and private radio stations. Management committees consisting of influential organizations and citizens are overseeing the CLICs.
Update 1 (As of June 2004)
All thirteen CLICs have been launched and receiving revenue. The CLIC project is pilot testing an off-grid communications system in a small town outside of Bamako, to see if the equipment can function effectively and at a sustainable price for other rural access opportunities. A training program focusing on marketing, business plan development, and monitoring and evaluation has been held for the staff members from the CLICs. One key element in the ongoing sustainability of the CLICs is strong cooperative relationships between the CLICs.
Update 2 (October-December 2004):
The CLICs made substantial marketing and outreach efforts to try to increase their revenues, relying, among other things, on their partnerships with community radio stations to disseminate information about the types of services CLICs offer. They also started establishing local Clubs of CLIC Friends (CLACs) within the primary and secondary schools.
All CLICs have now been provided with a reliable connection to the Internet. This should substantially enhance the CLICs' ability to attract customers, generate revenues and increase their financial sustainability. Some of the CLICs are also looking at alternative options for their sources of electricity in order to reduce costs and/or ensure a more reliable power supply.
Update 3 (January-March 2005):
During this first quarter of 2005, the third CLIC Association workshop and third regional training sessions took place. The main objectives of the Association Workshop and Regional Training were to strengthen the capabilities of the Advisory Boards and CLIC management teams, to facilitate exchange of lessons learned and best practices and develop strategies for addressing the common challenges faced by the CLICs. These key challenges include: 1) the need to continue and strengthen promotional activities in order to increase the number of clients; 2) strengthening and reconstituting advisory boards where necessary; and 3) developing and implementing strategies for content identification, sharing and utilization.
During the second half of February, a two-week assessment visit was undertaken. Findings are presented in the mission report.
During the second quarter of 2005, the fourth CLIC Association Workshop took place. The project was granted an extension to the end of September 2005. During July, dot-ORG's Barbara Fillip undertook a two-week field visit to the CLICs. The findings of this visit, combined with monitoring data collected by the CLICs on an ongoing basis, formed the basis for the final report.
Snapshot of Results
- 25,000 clients paid for services at the CLICs;
- The CLICs generated approximately US$44,000 in revenues;
- Approximately US$4,000 worth of vouchers was distributed to communities and used for CLIC services;
- Seven out of 13 CLICs have the potential to become financially sustainable (perhaps more if bandwidth sharing is deployed successfully in more locations);
- On average, 13% of CLIC clients were women.
Development Sector(s): Agriculture Markets and Trade, Outreach and Training, Civil Society, Governance, Enterprise Development, Information Technology, Microenterprise Development, HIV/AIDS, Infectious Diseases, Maternal and Child Health, Population, Women in Development
ICT Intervention(s): Capacity Building, Public Administration, e-government, Public/Private Partnerships, Radio, Telecenters, Telephony, Web site/portal
Links and Files:
- Centres Locaux d' Information et de Communication - CLIC: http://http://www.clicmali.org
Web site for the CLICs (telecenters) in Mali. In French. Provides access to a lot of locally relevant content in health, education and local governance.
- Community Communications Centers: IT for Development on the Cusp of Connectivity: http://http://www.interaction.org/ict/CCC.html
Article on InterAction web site mentioning Mali CLICs.
- Projet CLIC: un partenariat pour le developpement
Presentation on progress of Mali CLIC project as of April 2005 (in French).
- Mali CLICs: Assessment Mission - Feb/March 2005
Report of the assessment mission undertaken from February 19 to March 5th, 2005. The report highlights key findings and recommendations based on visits to 7 of the 13 CLICs.
- Establishing Community Learning and Information Centers (CLICs) in Underserved Malian Communities
This final project report includes an executive summary, a background section providing a historical perspective on the project, and a results and impacts section addressing financial sustainability, human capacity, organizational & technical sustainability as well as an analysis of services provided by the CLICs and a discussion of gender issues.
- Project Brief: Mali CLICs
This project brief was developed for the March 2006 TAG meeting. It provides an overview of the project at completion, highlighting results and lessons learned.
- Radio and the Internet
This document, prepared for the March 2006 TAG Meeting highlights dot-ORG's experience integrating radio and the Internet to address the needs of rural communities.