ChatterBox is an acronym for Church Activity, Theologiocal Training and Education Resource in a Box and it is an offline learning management system.
In Zimbabwe, the cost of data is too high for most households – especially because of the high levels of unemployment. In addition, the costs involved in transporting individuals to places of higher learning is prohibitive.
The faculty of Harare Theological College (HTC) had been praying about, and investigating the use of, technology to further the access to theological education by many of our rural pastors. Hosting online lessons seems to focus on a small portion of mainly urban pastors who have access to the internet and to computing devices.
The ChatterBox appears to solve many of the problems mentioned. Built on the Moodlebox platform (www.moodlebox.net), HTC have installed certificate level theological training content that can be accessed via any wireless device (smart phones to laptops) and does not use internet or mobile data to access.
In addition, HTC has installing other resources that can be useful to the church community: Bible Project Videos, Audio Bibles, The Jesus Film, Foundations for Farming content, and content from World Possible’s RACHEL program (https://worldpossible.org/rachel).
These modules are powered via a small solar panel and battery and then set up in churches and communities. The access is free for the majority of the content.
Our objective is to “load and leave” the units so that the church/community own the unit and it is up to them to ensure that it is kept safe and used by the community at no charge.