The initiatives by Telenor Pakistan to ensure children’s rights and protection has been recognized by the Global Child Forum, a Swedish non-profit headquartered in Stockholm.
The non-profit has put Telenor at the top in their children protection index in the ‘Corporate Responses to Protecting Children’s Rights’ report, after surveying all major Nordic corporations. Telenor Group has been cited as the best practice example with its work in child online safety and transparent reporting on child labor in Telenor’s supply chain.
The report has also highlighted Telenor Pakistan’s Digital Birth Registration (DBR) project, the school outreach program for child online safety called iChamp, and transparent reporting of child labor in the supply chain.
The Digital Birth Registration project was launched by Telenor in collaboration with UNICEF in 2016 with an aim to give Pakistani children their fundamental right to identity and improve their access to basic amenities.
The program is aimed at empowering unregistered children with legal documentation which can curtail child labor and trafficking. Under the project, 580,000 births in Pakistan have been digitally registered.
Furthermore, through their school outreach program, Telenor Pakistan has been taking solid measures to promote digital literacy among children besides educating them on online safety. The program was initiated in 2014 to familiarize and educate underprivileged children from far-flung areas about basic internet access to improve their lives.
Moreover, in 2017, Telenor also collaborated with Free Basics by Facebook through which students got free access to an online information portal with 17 websites using Telenor’s data connection. The iChamp program by Telenor has reached out to 1800 schools across the country, and has educated and trained over 600,000 students on using mobile technology for learning beyond classrooms.
Speaking on the occasion, Mai Oldgard, SVP and Head of Telenor Group Sustainability said, “I’m really pleased to see Telenor cited as a best practice example in the Global Child Forum report. Especially encouraging is the focus on our work with child online safety and digital birth registration – where we have educated 2,200,000 children to date globally and have digitally registered 580,000 births in Pakistan – as well as our ongoing transparent reporting of child labor in the supply chain. Huge credit goes to my colleagues across the group, from Norway to Myanmar, having worked long-term in these areas and doing so with integrity and passion.”
Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO of Telenor Pakistan, speaking on the occasion said, This adds to our passion of providing a safer online space to our younger generations and also by providing the basic right to identity. We have been sensitive about everyday challenges faced by the Pakistani masses and as part of our mission of empowering societies, have always worked to find solutions in technology.”