My name is Daniel Yomtobian, CEO of Advertise.com and I wanted to take a moment to share with you a commitment we recently made to work alongside Film Annex in hopes to improve the Afghanistan Educational System. Film Annex currently works with 28 Ad-networks, with Advertise.com being one of them. The collaborative efforts have been coined the Afghan Development Project and are designed to incorporate digital and social media into 40 schools in the city of Herat.
Initially, the project should give Internet access to 160,000 children. In time, the project should continue to grow and will hopefully extend into 1,000 Afghan schools and provide 4 million students with Internet access. I am a firm believer that digital and social media are powerful tools that can provide an effective means of education and empowerment. By giving children and women a source for obtaining knowledge and shifting to a more forward type of thinking, I hope this will lead to increased stability and overall progress in the future.
We also believe that this form of technology can have future financial benefits for the citizens of Afghanistan. While the current average annual income is $900, I hope to increase it to $8,000 in the future. I understand that there are obstacles such as skepticism of western influence and a Taliban revival. Along with this, I realize that the growth process in places like Afghanistan will take longer than in more developed countries. However, I hope that an efficient implementation of digital and social media can serve as the building blocks for a better future for Afghanistan.
In my view, these types of media can be highly beneficial for individuals living in impoverished and oppressed areas of the world. By people coming together and connecting with one another, they are more likely to reach a common goal. While in the past, citizens of oppressed countries didn’t really have a way to collaborate, the Internet now gives those people a collective voice. When citizens unite for a common good, many times they are able to break free from the chains of tyranny and work toward progress. In fact, digital and social media allows peoples’ voices to be heard and gives them a certain sense of empowerment.
While my current goal is to improve the educational system in Afghanistan, I don’t want to stop there. Ultimately, I want to take these efforts to the global scale and help further the advancement of other countries in need. This goes to show that the combination of philanthropy and technology can be incredibly powerful.
I hope you will join us in this worthy cause.