Conquering digital inequality: EDC, LiteHaus provide over 300 laptops to schools in Albay and Sorsogon City

SORSOGON, Philippines, 5 January 2024 — First Gen-owned Energy Development Corporation (EDC), the country’s leading renewable energy producer, continues its partnership with Australian-based non-profit organization LiteHaus International by providing of a total of 330 laptops to 22 elementary schools in Albay and Sorsogon City to further assist students in today’s technological era of online learning.

The endeavor is part of the two organizations’ ongoing union that kicked off in EDC’s geothermal site in Kidapawan, North Cotabato in 2022.

LiteHaus International established its first partnership in the Philippines with EDC, in collaboration with DXC Technology, to address digital poverty in the country. A total of 270 refurbished laptops were distributed to 18 schools in Kidapawan City, Cotabato. Since then, LiteHaus Founder and CEO Jack Growden made a commitment to the Department of Education (DepEd) that they will help more Filipino schools in its digitization program through their partnership with EDC.

During the MOU signing ceremony in Sorsogon on December 4, 2023 (Monday), Eduardo L. Jimenez, EDC Head of Corporate Relations Division – Bacman, acknowledged the opportunity to collaborate with LiteHaus in empowering students to thrive in the digital age by providing them with the necessary tools and resources for seamless and effective online learning.

“Teachers and heads, thank you for your continued support for our effort to bring about concrete changes and developments for our students,” Jimenez said. “For educators and partners present here, one of the many things that we can do is to invest in the kids and their education. We are thankful that we are finally able to do that through LiteHaus.”

Rizal Integrated National School Principal Domingo Bobier, Jr. awarded EDC and LiteHaus with a Certificate of Appreciation, represented by Eduardo Jimenez and Jienelle Catubay, respectively.

Charo Dichoso-Logronio, representative of Sorsogon City Mayor Hon. Mayor Ester Hamor, also expressed the city government’s desire to digitize their local schools and its students to help them keep up with the ever-evolving academic and technological requirements in today’s modern era of hybrid learning.

“Thank you very much EDC, DepEd, and barangay officials, for always collaborating with the city government,” said Dichoso-Logronio. “One of the 12-point agenda of the city government is the digitalization, not only of the elementary and high schools, but also of college students. Let the students experience the beauty of the laptop and the digital world.”

The event was followed by the actual distribution and installation of refurbished laptops to five schools, namely, Rizal Integrated National School, Inang Maharang Elementary School, Nagotgot Elementary Elementary School, both located in Manito, Albay; and Pawa Elementary School and Sto. Nino Integrated School in Sorsogon.

A total of 150 refurbished laptops were distributed to fifteen schools in 2023. The rest will be given to seven other schools in early 2024.

Representatives from EDC, LiteHaus International, Department of Education (DepEd), local government officials in Sorsogon, and recipient schools were present in the event.

Beyond the donation of laptops, LiteHaus International and EDC will oversee the implementation phase, which will include setting up computer labs in the selected schools, software licensing and access to offline educational materials where applicable. LiteHaus also plans to conduct digital skills training for teachers, which will benefit all areas where the refurbished laptops were distributed.

Energy Development Corporation (EDC) is First Gen Corporation’s 100% Renewable Energy (RE) subsidiary with over 1,480MW total installed capacity that accounts for 20% of the country’s total installed RE capacity. Its 1,185MW geothermal portfolio comprises 62% of the country’s total installed geothermal capacity, making the Philippines the third largest geothermal producer in the world. First Gen is the Philippines’ leading clean energy company.