BurdaEducation’s team live Burda’s company’s mission and values every day, ensuring that project objectives are attained efficiently, every time.
In this series, we explore what motivates the hardworking members of the BurdaEducation team as they support the education of millions of children around the world.
Name: Paul Kato
Designation: Business Developer
Country base: Rwanda
Prior to joining BurdaEducation in March 2018, Paul worked for five years with Tigo Rwanda where he led their Data Projects & Devices Portfolio. Subsequently, he joined the Hôtel des Mille Collines as a Marketing Executive for 2.5 years. Paul holds a degree in Marketing from the University of Rwanda.
- What do you see as the main objective of BurdaEducation and how do you pursue it?
Our main objective is to improve access to education through the timely provision of high-quality textbooks and teaching and learning materials to Ministries of Education and other entities that support education in Africa, Asia, and around the world. My personal career objectives and passion for playing a more relevant role in improving the lives of children drew me to the role I knew I would be required to fulfill at this organization. It seemed the perfect place from where I could make a difference in a child’s life. The fact that I love reading in general was an additional advantage.
- Can you describe what your present role entails?
Currently, I am responsible for scouting business opportunities from our potential clients, working on bid proposals, and coordinating and managing different projects within our hold. I am also involved in promoting and extending business for BurdaEducation to various African markets.
- What project are you currently working on? Please describe its scope and goals.
I am presently working on a project that entails the printing and distribution of supplementary reading materials (SRMs) for community-based reading camps in Ethiopia. As part of this, we have printed 1.5 million SRMs, which is something we are quite proud of at BurdaEducation. Currently, we are at the distribution stage, where we are required to distribute all this material to 40 woridas (districts) in Ethiopia.
The main goal for the project is to improve the reading proficiency and educational attainment of 15 million children. It is our hope and aim that this will enable them to lead productive lives and eventually drive Ethiopia’s economic, social and political development.
- Have you experienced any specific outcomes of the work that you do?
Yes, definitely! In the last 1.5 years that I have been with BurdaEducation, I have had the opportunity to travel to the many African countries we operate in. And it is there that I get to see the firsthand impact on the children of our efforts in providing them access to a basic education. Seeing them happy with the quality of our books and their eagerness to learn and explore more is proof that the narrative of Africa as a continent where people don’t read is changing rapidly.
- What is the most satisfying aspect of your work?
Simply put, it’s witnessing the overall influence that it has on children and knowing what a difference it will make to their future. I grew up not having much opportunity to read books. Yet, today, I am playing a role that allows me to offer that gift to a young, hopeful generation. Seeing them have access to reading material is the most satisfying aspect of my day to-day work. I like to take pictures of children reading the books we had just distributed to their school. The sight is so uplifting that it drives me to work even harder.
- Is there any specific project or achievement of which you are especially proud?
OPP 836288 – Printing and Distribution of JSS and SSS books, Sierra Leone: This is the project I am very proud of and happy to have worked on in 2018. I had the experience and opportunity to see children of Sierra Leone using the books we had just distributed to them and seeing the excitement on their faces. In fact, I put myself in their shoes and tried to imagine how they must be feeling. I enjoyed every moment of seeing the joy in their eyes.