In this video, Fereshteh Forough and Jeremy Ostermiller talk about their association with Film Annex and in turn the difference that they are making to the life of Afghanis and Afghanistan’s progress. Jeremy Ostermiller is the Founder and CEO of Aptitude Digital Partners. They are partners with Film Annex and help them monetize their online ad inventory. They have been associated with Film Annex for 3 years. Fereshteh Forough is the CEO of Afghan Citadel Software Company that is actively collaborating with Film Annex in Afghanistan to build internet classrooms in Herat province of Afghanistan. They also endeavor to provide internet connectivity and computers to the students in Afghanistan. She is also instrumental in coordinating many projects for Afghanistan as well as Central Asian countries. They have actively been working on an online exam system and looking to get that implemented in other neighboring countries and also aim to translate their projects into local languages.
Jeremy shares that out of the $20 bn worth of ads that they sell annually, almost 80% comes from the developed world like the US, UK, Australia and Canada. Through their partnership with Film Annex, they are reaching out to new and developing markets like Afghanistan and Central Asia. It is a huge task to bring internet to the larger population of Afghanistan. And Fereshteh shares that they are getting help not only from international aid agencies but also through partners and other contributors. Basically, both of them emphasize the importance of internet to be a key tool for education, better economic opportunities, knowledge share, exchange of information and a means of empowerment. They are also actively using social media tools to generate awareness about their initiatives and to get Afghanis more involved in this cultural and knowledge exchange.
Jerry explains the challenges to expand connectivity via internet largely due to repressive regimes in certain countries. The governments impose censorship or do not want the general popular to have unrestrained access. The real hindrance is in getting past these barriers to create a global community that is connected. Fereshteh plans to build models in education and IT that can be then replicated in Central and South Asian countries. The end effect – expedite education and empowerment through spread of internet.
Do watch the interview for the great efforts that are being made by these individuals and their organizations in collaboration with Film Annex in Afghanistan and other countries of the region.
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