5.2.2 Sustainable funding models and trends in the philanthropic approach

Funding for accessible MCTs should go beyond “parachuting in” technology and look at a sustainable business model for the center. The TASCHA report found that after the initial capital injection to buy AT and pay for training was finished, many telecenters found it difficult to become self-sufficient. While corporate social responsibility can potentially be utilized to secure an initial capital investment from a company or foundation, the TASCHA report warns that this funding model on its own is at odds with the “kind of investment need for meaningful support of human development initiatives such as [the development of accessible MCTs],”155 POETA points to trends in the philanthropic approach to providing aid to developing countries. Donating organizations have become more focused on the results of the investment. They play the role of a broker by providing a mix of funds, knowledge and expertise and requiring that projects are replicable, sustainable and have appreciable results.156

In the context of accessible MCTs based in schools, consideration should be given to the sustainability of the business model. While much of the infrastructure, such as the school building and computer room, can be made available at no cost to the community, careful planning is required for funding ongoing ancillary services such as hiring trainers and providing job skills training.

155TASCHA page 85.

156POETA - presentation on file