MANILA, Philippines - Limitless Lab, a global social innovation company based in Manila, has trained more than 10,000 Filipinos on digital literacy and on how to combat misinformation and disinformation online since August 2022.
In partnership with ASEAN Foundation and with support from Google.org, more than 101 digital literacy training sessions were conducted all over the country in various schools, barangays, and communities as part of the ASEAN Digital Literacy Programme (ASEAN-DLP).
The Philippines is dubbed as the “patient zero” of digital disinformation worldwide. In fact, according to the Social Weather Station in 2021, 51% of Filipinos find it difficult to spot ‘fake news’ in the media.
“Limitless Lab is one with ASEAN Foundation and Google.org in supporting digital literacy through programs helping our fellow Filipinos to be more critical online and to become more conscious of how they consume digital content,” said Joie Cruz, founder and CEO of Limitless Lab.
Along with Break the Fake Movement (BTFM), Limitless Lab is one of the selected pioneer implementers of the program in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia.
#Digitalino: Gamified Training Curriculum on Digital Literacy
In August 2022, Limitless Lab designed and launched #DigiTalino, a gamified and storified training curriculum that aims to highlight the importance of being a responsible digital citizen and how to discern disinformation and misinformation online.
Presented in a laymanized and friendly manner, the #DigiTalino curriculum was designed to be understandable by the youngest to oldest learners from grassroots communities.
The #DigiTalino curriculum since then has been used to train various sectors including grade school children, adolescents, young professionals, parents, and senior citizens.
"I am very grateful to the workshop that I [...] am being refreshed and reminded of the responsibilities that I too have to be very critical and analytical in the ways information has driven us. I have to be aware of the purposes and reasons why and how information can validly improve us. Let us move together in a healthy and informed digital society,” said Fr. Januarius Michael Ma. G. Paglinawan, MMHC, a #DigiTalino participant from Mater Dei College, SIlay, Negros Occidental.
Master Trainers Teaching #DigiTalino
To be able to train 10,000+ Filipinos on digital literacy, Limitless Lab selected over 66 Master Trainers from various regions and provinces to roll out and replicate the #DigiTalino sessions in their own communities.
The Master Trainers went through a rigorous Training of Trainers Program spearheaded by BTFM before they were sent out to deliver the training sessions locally. The Master Trainers learned about responsible digital citizenship, media literacy, fake news and disinformation, positive participation, social media and the law, and how to facilitate #DigiTalino sessions. They were also given access to the #DigiTalino Master Trainers’ toolkit and dashboard.
“Receiving training on digital literacy taught me to be more cautious with my interactions online and it also equipped me to make proactive efforts in ensuring that false information goes checked and corrected. Being trained on digital literacy also meant sharing this advocacy with others, especially leaders and policymakers, to improve their lives and the marginalized sectors they vowed to serve,” Katrezia Fiel Macawile, a Region IV-A Master Trainer, said.
The passion and volunteerism of ASEAN-DLP Master Trainers in the Philippines are the primary drivers of the successful implementation of Limitless Lab of the project.
Lenie Castaneda, a Region IX Master Trainer, added, “As I conducted ASEAN-DLP Training in our community, I [was] able to educate the people on digital literacy and it brought joy to see them acquiring new knowledge and [being] wise. Most importantly, I shared my knowledge [with] my husband and children, we are all becoming #Digitalino.”
Ana Mae Cantel, a Master Trainer from Region VI, also shared that she had never been more passionate about her advocacy in reaching out to the community and witnessing their transformation after the #DigiTalino session. “I'm even more inspired to reach out to more students, youth, parents, and communities now that I've seen how this training has given them confidence and critical thinking skills in a digital society,” she said.
“We are very fortunate to have a ‘battalion’ of volunteer Master Trainers that have been working tirelessly with us to combat disinformation and to promote digital literacy for the love of our country. Our success is because of all their efforts and because of the spirit of bayanihan,” emphasized Cruz.
The ASEAN Digital Literacy Programme (ASEAN-DLP) is an initiative led by the ASEAN Foundation to combat misinformation and disinformation in the region. With support from Google.org, the two-year programme aims to empower 1,000+ trainers across ten ASEAN countries with the digital literacy skills they need to train 100,000+ end beneficiaries in their communities.
For organizations interested to bring the ASEAN-DLP and #DigiTalino training sessions to your school or community, email Ange Encomienda at [email protected].
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