Finland government to train 1 million Pakistani students

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Karachi(Cliff News)The Federal Minister of Planning & Development – Asad Umar, chaired the signing ceremony of a historic MoU between the Governments of Finland and Pakistan, to launch an initiative to train 1 million students on disruptive technologies like; Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IOT), Gaming-Tech, Health-Tech, etc. This is the first and the largest ‘Mass IT Education Program’ in collaboration with the Government of Finland. It will be managed by prestigious institutions like the “Kajaani University of Applied Sciences”, Finland, “Allied ICT”, Finland and the Virtual University (VU) Pakistan, while also engaging a local partner – Integration Xperts (IX), in Pakistan to provide technical expertise.The former Minister of Information-Technology – Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui (MNA) also graced the occasion, accompanied by senior officials of the Ministry of IT & Telecom, CEO of Kajaani University Matti Saren, Rector of VU-Mr. Naeem Tariq, Delegates of Allied ICT Finland and Global Alliance, etc., while the CEO of Vendor Junction (Regional Partner) – Sayed Jawed also witnessed the signing ceremony, along with Mr. Umair Azam – Managing Director of Integration Xperts (Representative in Pakistan). All these stakeholders have been working hard for the last one year, to make this venture a reality.Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui thanked the Government of Finland for their support and stated that: “This valuable initiative reflects Pakistan government’s commitment to enrich the economy with an additional qualified workforce of one million youngsters, educated on European professional standards, to learn special skill-sets. It will enable them to capitalize on the latest trends evolving in Information-Technology. With their globally recognized certifications, these fresh human-resources will strengthen Pakistan’s IT industry, by nurturing a wide range of technology start-ups. Pakistan will thus gain competitive-advantage in the global free-lance work-space, to become an attractive destination for international companies searching for qualified technology experts.”The President & CEO of Kajaani University and Member ICT Finland – Matti Saren, said: The Economist Intelligence Report has declared Finland as the best country in the world for future skills-education, while the PISA research by OECD also ranks Finland as the best higher-education & training system in the world. Since Last year, Vendor Junction and Integration Xperts have been exploring ways to access the highest quality of mass-education, technologies and ideas. By following the proven system of Finland, millions of Pakistanis will now become highly-rated experts in the global business environment. The European enterprises are also being engaged to identify investment opportunities in this region, which promises great talents for building innovative businesses.Anas Al Natsheh – Director of International Education Cooperation at Kajaani University said: Resourceful international collaborations and digital technologies are enabling accessibility to quality education across the globe, nurture innovations, new ideas and products. These collaborations serve as great platforms for knowledge-exchange, teaching and learning. Rapid advancement promises accelerated progress, especially for developing countries.Jarmo Jarvenpaa, member of Allied ICT Finland and CEO of iSTOC stated: Digitalization is creating a whole new world of possibilities for growth. Partnerships are enabling new ways to attract investments and achieve agility for success. Working research institutes and local healthcare partners, Allied ICT has already executed a successful infectious-diseases program in Pakistan. Now we are implementing this international training program for nurses and healthcare workers, through mHealth education.The experts involved in this initiative recognize that; AI, IoT, Machine Learning, Data Analytics, Digital Networking, Gaming and Drone Technology, are essential skills for success in the global ICT market. Investing on quality incubation and commercialization centres with accredited certifications are needed to nurture local talent, start-ups, based on research, that can impact, sustainability and lives in society as a whole.

 

 

64th CLF kicks off in Lahore with a bang

CLF Lahore Photo Release (Day 1) - 64thChildren’s Literature Festival kicks off in Lahore with a bang (Jan 21, 2020)

Lahore(Cliff News)Day 1 of the two-day programme of 64th Children’s Literature Festival CLF culminated here today at the Children Library Complex Lahore, with 1000s of children, teachers and families participating with great spirit in over 50 sessions. CLF is the largest children’s learning festival of the country! Graced inclusively by government, private, and special schools it is created a positive narrative for learning through feelings and inquiry for ALL in Pakistan. Nearly 10,000 children attended the festival on the first day.Punjab Minister Food, Sami ullah Chaudary inaugurated the 64th Children’s Literature Festival (CLF) cutting the ribbon of a beautiful installation celebrating the theme and tarana of the CLF “Hamein Kitab Chahiye”. The festival’s inauguration at the CLC Main Ground or the “Walled City Lahore Gardens – “Nai Reesan Shehr Lahore Diyan” mesmerized the entire audience with brilliant renditions by the children from Government Special School Choubarji and Shahdab School, two young authors who share their writings in Urdu and English, and the Sanjan Nagar School students of Faiz Ahmed Faiz poetry. The Minister whilst presenting the CLF Awards to longstanding CLF unique resource persons said. “Today is a very special day for me; I want to be a child once again- let us all work for the learning beyond the narrow text books culture”. Commenting on the event, Ms. Talat Fatemah Naqvi, member of the Provincial Assembly of Punjab said, I am just awe struck at the scale and beauty of this festival – the only one of this kind in Pakistan.Earlier Dr. Fauzia Saeed, Director General Pakistan National Cultural Academy (PNCA) invited as the Guest of Honor, said that CLF is a powerful platform that celebrates diversity and learning! She said “I am overwhelmed each time by this unique festival for children committed to enhancing the love of reading and critical thinking among children through beautifully crafted storytelling, creative writing, illustrations, theatre, music, puppet shows, digital, robotics and STEM workshops, book launches and book fairs.The festival opened with multiple sessions taking place simultaneously making it very difficult to make choices by children and teachers alike as they hopped from one segment to another in a bid to attend as many as possible within the same time slot, learning the rich ideas.Whilstouncing the need to celebrate learning, reading, storytelling, and children focused activities, Baela RazaJamil, CEO ITA and founder CLF said, “We are back today with the tilsm / magic of CLF all due to the efforts of over 40 amazing partners and 130 valuable and celebrity resource persons present making our children happy; multiplying the love for stories, storytelling, reading and inquiry for expanding our imagination. Good things happen when we work together for them to happen,” she said, adding that books, literature as performing arts and science as interactive inquiry of nature through all senses broadened the minds of our children and teachers to new and fresh ideas. To honor and encourage our teachers the Teachers’ Literature Festival will be held to foster professional development and multiply the CLF in the classrooms on January 23, 2020 from 9:00 -3:00 p.m. The first day saw the Main Stage packed with kids interested in the atre conducted by Khaled Anam, AtifBadar to storytelling sessions by Suno Kahani Mari Zubaani and through the mural of love by Fauzia Minallahan open mic session for students” bolkay lab Azad hein teray” and a concert titled “Rocking Timeless Poetry by Ali Noor, Ali Hamza and Rakae Jamil”.The Shakespeare Hall held dramatic storytelling, puppet show by Alif Laila Book Bus Society, and Shair o Shairi ,Mushaira by Sanjan Nagar school students. Bano Qudsia held book launches by a 7 year old Zahra Bokhari and first time author Anam Khan along with Sign Language Facilitation and panel discussions. In Waris Shah di Baithak 1, full-day activity on the art of bookmaking was held by OUP’s team. FaizGhar Auditorium had Theatrical performance by Sanjan Nagar Students, theater performance by Rafi Peer and development through astronomy in Pakistan by Cosmic Perspectives. Digital Pakistan and Arfa Karim room featured digital various digital activates and session Safe Internet by ITA team.Karwan-e-Iqbal held public speaking workshop, History of Lahore by Rumana Husain, Critical thinking and creativity, storytelling session of folktales of Kalaash were narrated by the ‘Shaman- .from the beautiful Kalash Valley and  Khurshid Khan an amazing school teacher from Peshawar.The programmesat Abdus Salam hadrich learning spaces with daylong activities including robowars by Oxbridge, the amazing LHC tunnel by Khwarizmi Society, Robotronics, Science Fuse and heritage activities by State Bank of Pakistan Museum teams. Potters, paper making, wooden toys experts, arts and crafts and three mobile libraries from CLF and Alif Laila Book Bus Society enthralled Ghar had everyone.Cinema film screenings from Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (SOC) Films, Quaid say Batein, many others.CLF Lahore has been generously supported by the Children Library Complex, School Education Department Punjab, Oxford University Press (OUP), Open Society Foundations, Oxfam, the British Council Library, Life Skills for Kids (LSK), Lahore Grammar School and Roots Millennium Schools.CLF promotes creativity, imagination and responsible citizenship through multi-sensory stimulation both in and beyond classrooms and textbooks, a truly unique platform that practically illustrates ways of motivating children to learn through self-expression, tolerance and critical thinking.CLF continues to spread the love of learning and propagation  practically as the largest learning festival for children and teachers in Pakistan promoting multiple intelligences; being held from Mithi, Turbat and Muzaffargarh to Lahore, Peshawar, Karachi  & Islamabad since 2011-Lahore marks the 64th CLF.Entry is free for all-Children as the VIPs of the CLF and adults must be accompanied by them. 

Super Bus Launch Party:A little sneak peek

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Did you hear about Super Bus? If not, then let us break it down to you today. Recently, there was a grand launch party at the Pavilion End Club that unveiled the majestic Super Bus to the people.

As we all know, recreational activities are on the low in Karachi. There aren’t a lot of quality entertainment arenas and theme parks for the locals to visit and take their families out for some fun time.

There are some few quality entertainment arenas like Super Space, Aladin Amusement Park, Askari Park and Pavilion End Club, but most of the fun seekers find these places far to visit. But don’t worry; Super Bus is here to turn things around!

What happened at the launch party?

We attended the launch party and it was awesome and even that is an understatement. There was loads of cool stuff to do at the launch party. First things first, there were very familiar faces from the world of stars and celebrities. There was Shamoon Abbasi at the scene along with the fabulous Sherry Shah. On top of that, there were comedic legends of Pakistan such as Shafaat Ali and Saleem Afridi present at the event attracting the crowds towards themselves like a magnet.

But wait, the biggest attraction was Super Bus in the launch party at Pavilion End Club. Loads of bloggers/vloggers and celebrities enjoyed the cool activities inside of Super Bus. Not only that, to take things up a notch, there were also Super Space rides for the attendees to enjoy. The event was fantastic to say the least.

What’s Inside of Super Bus

Super Bus was made by A.A Joyland; founders of Super Space, Pavilion End Club and Aladin Amusement; park to bring the entertainment experience on the go. If you’re someone looking for theme parks or amusement parks but can’t seem to drive to the distance or simply cant find the schedule to make time out for these activities then don’t worry Super Bus is here to the rescue.

Super Bus comes with three amazing activities. These three games and activities are:

VR Games

In VR Games, you put your headset on and dive into a whole new immersive gaming experience where you can feel and interact with the environment. It’s the same high quality VR games that you love from Pavilion end Club and Super Space.

Laser Maze

Laser Maze game, as also found inside of Super Space, is a puzzle game where the players have to make it to the other end of the bus without hitting the lasers. If they successfully do it, they win the game. Sounds awesome, right?

Karaoke Booth

In Super Bus Karaoke Booth, you grab a microphone and sing along to the lyrics appearing on the screen as inspired by the Karaoke set-up inside of Pavilion End Club. It’s spectacular to the core.

Where you can find fun on wheels?

Currently, Super Bus is at Pavilion End Club. As mentioned above, Super Bus is able to move anywhere in Karachi and take fun no matter where you are outside of Pavilion End Club. Super Bus is primarily for School, University and Corporate bookings, so people who are stuck in a busy schedule can make time and have some quality time.

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PCB partners with Uber for ground breaking girls school participation program

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Lahore(Cliff News)The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) today announced a partnership with Uber for the development of girls’ cricket at school level across the country through its Cric4Us Programme.The six-month partnership, which commences from the day of signing, will benefit more than 1,500 players through collaboration with schools in 14 cities namely Abbottabad, Bahawalpur, Charsadda, Haripur, Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, Mardan, Multan, Muzaffargarh, Nowshera, Peshawar, Quetta and Rawalpindi.Under the six-month partnership, playing and training clothing will be provided to 850 children, while cricket equipment will be provided to 50 schools.The programme will select a minimum of four schools in every city.With women coaches and mentors given priority, 50 school-based sports staff will be provided training. Twenty-five pitches will be developed in schools across five zones.PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan: “For the promotion of women and girls cricket and the enhancement of the player pool, it is imperative that women cricket is developed at school level.“The PCB has been undertaking many initiatives through its Cric4Us Programme and plans to exhaust all avenues to provide better opportunities for girls to take up the sport and to see it as a viable profession at a later stage. “I am hopeful that this valuable partnership between the PCB and Uber will help us in achieving this very goal. I want to thank Uber for putting its trust in the PCB for the development of women and girls cricket at school level.”GM Uber Saad Naveed Pall: “Our goal is to not only tell stories of empowered women but to create an ecosystem which enables aspiring women cricketers.“We are excited about this partnership with the PCB to provide opportunities to young girls who will go on to challenge the status quo by becoming change agents of the future.”Cric4Us Programme is a women cricket development project launched under the flagship of Women Cricket Vision 2022, which focuses on the growth of the sport in schools and provide a proper pathway for making way to the emerging and national teams. The schools’ children will also avail the opportunity of regular evening practice, so as to provide them maximum development opportunities. The schools will also play matches on regular basis, which will help children in developing the desired skill-set. 

 

Dettol educate 2 million kids to become hygiene ambassadors

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Karachi(Cliff News)The purpose of Global Handwashing Day, celebrated every 15th October worldwide, is to reiterate the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.  In anticipation of this Global Hand Washing Day, “Dettol” educated the kids of SOS Hermann Gmeiner School on the importance of healthy habits and ensuring personal hygiene, especially hand washing. The interactive session was part of the year-round school program Dettol conducts with over 2 million school going kids every year.A large percentage of foodborne disease outbreaks are spread by contaminated hands. Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has estimated that washing hands with soap and water can reduce the diarrheal disease-associated deaths by up to 50%.“It is extremely important to instill healthy habits at an early age and educate our children regarding their well-being,” said Humayun Farooq, Director Marketing – Health, Reckitt Benckiser Pakistan Limited (RB) – makers of Dettol. He added that “We at Dettol strongly believe that kids have a very entrepreneurial nature, where they will find creative ways to spread a message if it has been registered correctly in their minds. Since kids respond to stories better, this year we have launched a special handwash campaign as well which narrates the story of a boy called Ahmed who articulates the message of handwashing in his own creative way to teach others. We believe in clean hands for all and thus through this campaign we want to reach out to even those kids who we cannot connect with physically.”While speaking at the occasion, the school’s principal, Sharmin Yasir said, “Including school children as part of the Dettol School Program will not only ensure the adoption of this habit but will also reduce disease incidence among them. Through this initiative, Dettol teaches school going children healthier living habits with an aim to increase their attendance in school.”

 

Dettol brings a chance to win school scholarships

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Karachi(Cliff News)The Back to School campaign is offered by Dettol every year and they are continuing the tradition this year as well. The scholarship will cover the tuition fee for a period of 12 months, from the 1st of January 2020 till 31st of December 2020 for those who win. There have been 21 Dettol Scholars who have won this scholarship in the past two years along with the winner of the Dettol School Fund. Dettol offers several opportunities to increase access to quality education in the county. “We are extremely thankful to Dettol for providing our kid an opportunity to have a better future through Dettol Scholarship ’’ says Basim Sajjad’s Mother who was one the scholarship winners from last year.The campaign will continue taking entries till August 31, 2019. For taking part in the contest, the applicant is required to buy any qualifying, Pakistani made variant of Dettol soap and give a missed call on 0306-3Dettol (0306-3338865). The applicant will then receive a call and an SMS with further instructions to enter the four-digit batch code number and the details of the kid to participate.Humayun Farooq, Director Marketing – Health, Reckitt Benckiser Pakistan, commented about the campaign “Going back to school is an exciting time for children and parents alike. To add further to their excitement, this year again we are giving parents a chance to win school-scholarships for their children. Through our initiatives, we want to ensure that children have a more productive school year by ensuring good health through sustained hygienic practices that Dettol promotes.Dettol has always played an important part in giving back to the community through different campaigns & programs. The Dettol School Program is an excellent example which reaches out to two million school going children across Pakistan educating them on the importance of cleanliness and hygiene.

 

AMI School to promote inclusive learning

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Karachi(Cliff News)Over the past five years, The AMI School has been a crucial partner in a collaborative Action Research project, along with the Occupational Therapy departments at Brunel University, London and Dow University of Health Sciences, Karachi. Through this inter-professional collaboration, the teachers involved in the project have become highly skilled researchers and peer educators for their colleagues.On their panel is Dr Debbie Kramer-Roy, an occupational Therapist, Lecturer and works with AMI as a Project Coordinator. She is a passionate advocate for the rights of all children to high quality and inclusive education, and uses Action Research to develop the vision, knowledge and skills required to make this happen in real-world contexts. Debbie explains: “the teachers and occupational therapists involved in the project have developed a contextually appropriate approach to inclusive education and the Resource Guide that has been produced has the potential to spread the vision, knowledge and skills to schools across the country. A key learning point has been that inclusive teaching improves the learning experience and environment for all children in the school, demonstrating that inclusive education is an excellent approach to whole-school improvement”Working with its chief objective of expanding its scope of services, AMI plans to set up a model of an educational enterprise (Education Eco-System) which is not only unique in design but also aims to change the meaning of the term “expansion” in the context of education. Instead of using the present model of establishing more schools,  it proposes horizontal growth by developing supporting units to not only enhance the quality of education for students, teachers and parents but to initiate positive changes at the community level leading to meaningful changes in the social attitudes and behavior.The AMI School is committed to an education system built on this approach to accepting responsibility for all children to a welcoming and respectful environment. The School recognizes the importance of social acceptance and high self-esteem as pre-requisites to real learning in the school setting.  It actively seeks to create an environment which facilitates the learning process for everyone and to remove the barriers that can hinder participation or exclude individuals from daily routines. Regular schools with this inclusive orientation are the most effective means of combating discriminatory attitudes, creating welcoming communities, building an inclusive society and achieving education for all.

About AMI:

The AMI School, has been operating as a renowned and well established institution for several years now and is one of the projects of Education Works Pvt Ltd. Apart from the school, the Company runs a Day care and learning Centre, transport services for more than 700 children and nearly 200 employees. It has steadily been growing in size and facilities over the last decade and is now perfectly poised to undertake major expansion in its scope of services.