The advancement in information and communication technologies (ICTs) over the last three decades or so has created opportunities in al sectors of human society to solve the human development problem. One of the practical ways of exploring ICTs to accelerate development in remote and underserved communities is through the introduction of the concepts of Community Information Centres (CICs). CICs have contributed to accelerated development in the developed world, however investment into CICs in Africa specifical y Ghana has not yielded the expected outcome.
The study therefore explored and described the chal enges confronting the implementation of Community Information Centre (cic) programme in Ga East Municipality in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. Four objectives served as a guide in this study namely:
To examine the nature of CIC programme and their functions in Ga East MunicipalityTo explain the source that inform the construction of the ICTs at the CIC in Ga East MunicipalityTo study the process used in the delivery and implementation of the CIC programme in Ga East MunicipalityTo examine the key chal enges affecting the successful implementation of CIC programmes in Ga East Municipality.
The study adopted a qualitative approach relying on the interpretative phenomenological design specifical y, realistic phenomenological approach to capture the views and lived experiences of participants in the study. A total of ten participants were engaged in this study; the participants were put into two separate focused group discussions in which they discussed about their understanding of their lived experiences on the topic of the study. The study used Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The IPA approach was used to make sense
of the phenomenon under investigation, and explored the meanings participants‟ idiographic experiences held for them. The interpretative phenomenological analytical approach made it possible for the thematic analysis of the data. Four major findings emerged from the theme in line with the objectives set for the study namely: Firstly, the study revealed that users and centre coordinators of the CIC in Ga East Municipality were likely to approach the use of the facilities differently because both held varied perceptions about the nature of programme offered at the centre. Secondly, the fact that the centre over-relied on foreign technology without modifications to suit the ict needs of the beneficiaries may have affected an al – inclusive participation of the beneficiaries of the CIC programme in Ga East Municipality. Thirdly the centre programme also lacked local content which affected the participation of majority of the local stakeholders in Ga East. Final y, many beneficiaries of the centre lacked access to the programme of the centre. The study therefore concluded based on these findings that the centre may have not been functioning properly as a result of the following chal enges: lack of accessibility of the programme to the beneficiaries of the centre, inappropriate technology and programme of the centre and the lack of participation of local stakeholders in the implementation of the programme of the centre.
Based on these findings the following recommendations were made including: conducting an assessment of ICT needs of the communities in Ga East, adapting the technologies procured for the centre and design suitable programmes to help address ICT needs of beneficiaries. The study also recommended to the management of the Ga East CIC to extend its collaboration efforts to private companies and civil society organizations providing these services and partner with them in the area of capacity building, logistics and operation.
Recent trends appear to suggest that access to information has been greatly enhanced through ICTs, creating opportunities like never before for the youth and adults to acquire knowledge and skil s that make possible continuous learning over their lifetime and improvement in their living condition (Boateng, 2012). Therefore ICTs which include radio and television as wel as newer digital technologies such as computers and the internet, have the potential to increase access to learning by helping to overcome barriers such as those of cost, time and space (Boateng, 2012). Thus, ICT has the potential to enhance education general y and in particularly Non-formal Education (NFE) and Life Long Learning (LLL). The European
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