Since its launch in 2016, the Global Alliance for Literacy within the Framework of Lifelong Learning (GAL) has driven international discourse and guided the agenda for literacy provision globally for those who need it most. GAL is an alliance of 29 countries committed to improving youth and adult literacy and it serves as a platform for its members to collectively discuss progress and challenges, exchange knowledge and good practices. In April 2020, a GAL strategy was adopted after an extensive consultation. The same year, GAL has welcomed 14 Associate Members, including ICAE, to support the implementation of its strategy.
On 29 September GAL member countries, GAL Associate Members, invited speakers and observers were invited to the General Annual Meeting 2021, which included ICAE and ASPABE. Objectives of this meeting were to review the impact of Covid-19 crisis on youth and adult literacy, share current country experiences and challenges of literacy provision in times of Covid-19 and identify opportunities for partnerships for the GEC-GAL initiative on improving digital competences of literacy educators in GAL countries.
ICAE, represented by Robbie Guevara (ICAE President) and Ricarda Motschilnig (ICAE Policy and Advocacy Officer) as well as ASPBAE, represented by Cecilia (Thea) Soriano, Programmes and Operations Coordinato conducted break-out group discussions on “Partnerships for GEC-GAL initatives on literacy educators.” Questions discussed in the breakout session were: In developing digital literacy programmes in a society where there are hierarchies, particularly on economic status, gender, caste, religion and ethnicity, who are we thinking of? Within the “leave no one behind,” framework, who has access to the power of the digital medium in this age? How is digital as a resource getting distributed, who gets to access this resource and for what?
Three experiences on digital literacy and partnerships within the framework of equitable, inclusive and quality ALE were shared.
1) An introduction on the Global Adult Learning and Education Curriculum – digitalization module
2) The Applied Digital Literacy (AppDiL) implemented by ASPBAE member Nirantar Trust in 30 villages in North India where 900 women from marginalised groups participated and continue to participate.
3) Advocacy on resourcing digital literacy – looking at the trends in financing education and ALE and where ASPBAE members have seen the opportunity to advocate for ALE financing.