Sentech has been awarded the "BBQ CSI Award," at the Black Business Quarterly (BBQ) awards.
The prize recognised Sentech's CSI and social responsibility contribution in the areas of education, community development, job creation, and health.
The BBQ Awards is held annually by the Black Business Quarterly magazine which speaks directly to black businesses in South Africa as well as the SADAC region.
"Sentech's CSI initiatives are a cause that staff at all levels of the company support. Sentech is committed to its pledge to social upliftment and bridging the digital divide in all areas of South Africa and Africa," says Laetitia Vollmer, Sentech's corporate social investment manager.
One of Sentech's most successful CSI projects has been the technical support which it offers to the Perinatal HIV Research Unit at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital. Sentech's VSAT satellite link transports vital research information on HIV/Aids generated in South Africa to the international community. Sometimes up to 200,000 pages of data are shared each year.
"One of Sentech's primary objectives is to perpetuate knowledge in society and in the economy. Sentech believes the best way to do this is to give future generations an education that will empower them," adds Vollmer.
Sentech's VSAT technology is a satellite-driven Internet service which has enabled the Myeka High School, in the KwaZulu Natal Midlands to cross the digital divide. Even though the school is situated more than six kilometres from the nearest telephone lines, VSAT technology has made it possible for educational resources to be transmitted to the school's computer.
As a member of the Oracle Consortium, Sentech provides the VSAT satellite technology to e-schools in South Africa, Ghana, Lesotho, Kenya, Egypt, Gabon and Mali.
The aim of the initiative is to provide ICT equipment, skills and knowledge to primary and secondary school students that will enable them to function in a modern economy. Part of the initiative is to enable teachers to use ICT, as a tool to enhance teaching and learning. Results thus far have shown an increase in the use of computers for e-mailing, writing papers and researching information.
"It's a wonderful achievement to be recognised for our social investment and we are encouraged to continue with projects of this nature. We will continue to seek ventures that contribute meaningfully to the upliftment of all those who are less privileged than ourselves," adds Vollmer.