8 years ago after years of wars, the Karmojong were just beginning to settle into communities, for many, the pastoralist life was coming to an end. The elders recognized this and the bike program was the first step. Mobility allowed the people to do so much more, and the 4000 bikes lifted the overall size of the economy multiple times.
The schools in the region had few books, and for the bright students, it was very difficult to find educational and reading material. We created theiEmpowerment program and launched it first in Karamoja and it has now grown across all of Africa with over 8000 organizations using it and 75 plus community health schools. Technology is important and in a connected world, we in Karamoja are focused on not only helping our own people but also everyone else in Africa.
Our ability to understand and deploy world class technology, not only touches education, but we incorporate it in Kara Tunga and in Paul Sherwen Classic Safari's to create further differentiation and opportunity. We are equally excited to help Alfred create and grow the first Information Technology and Computer Hardware Services business in the region. Karamoja IT also understands the need to give back and for all who want the iEmpowerment program, Alfred and his team are keen to help in any way they can.
One of our goals in 2018 is to begindeveloping additional software and services to assist in the collection of valuable data related to healthcare, education and agriculture. We are also looking into launching a program to build, sell and support Apps for mobile devices with an initial focus on healthcare and Malaria.
Today, we lead all of Uganda and most of Africa in the efficient deployment of technology, especially mobile technology focusedon empowering local initiatives first and then exporting those services to the world.
Empowering others and making a difference at a grassroots level is in our DNA. As a tour operator, we understand the importance of being a great ground handler, but more importantly, our ability to make a difference and create positive change, while helping the tourists interested in new models of development also learn new skills, providing an even greater experience on their trip to Kidepo and Karamoja.