In 2013 the idea of bringing Free WiFi to thousands of users in Tshwane seemed far-fetched. The sheer size of the idea was intimidating and the challenges to overcome were many.
Big ideas require big commitment and together the City of Tshwane and Project Isizwe fought against all odds to bring the idea to life.
But we also needed you, the people of Tshwane, to embrace free WiFi as your own, and use it in unique and creative ways to fulfil your dreams and aspirations.
Well, embrace it you did and now that big idea has hit a big milestone.
A Big Idea Hits A Big Milestone
Executive Mayor of Tshwane Solly Msimanga has been vocal in his support of the Free WiFi project.
“Since starting in 2013 TshWi-Fi has facilitated access for 3 million users. That’s enough people to fill Soccer City 30 times,” he said in his Inaugural Budget Speech. “TshWi-Fi has taken on a momentum of its own with active and engaged citizens making a difference in their communities with the power of technology.”
He goes on to say that “cities can be urban hubs of creativity and innovation, the new administration of the City of Tshwane has an ambitious vision of becoming the most connected city on the African continent.”
This remarkable milestone means that the City is in a very strong position to claim that accolade.
Turning Access Into Success
Tshwane’s big idea turned out to be a big deal for a lot of people. Not only did it allow users who previously only had limited access to get online, it also gave small businesses the chance to use information technology to thrive.
Entrepreneurs like Sizwe Ntloko, a photographer and graphic designer, use Tshwane Free Wi-Fi to grow and operate their business ventures. Sizwe accesses the internet at TshWi-Fi zones and communicates with his team and sends designs to clients. “We’re living in a new world with technology,” says Sizwe, “that’s why Tshwane Free Wi-Fi is important.”
Free Wi-Fi has made a real impact on people’s lives: “TshWi-Fi gives the youth the opportunity to expand their minds,” says Lenah Mashiya, a local radio station presenter and TshWi-Fi Champion, who encourages young people to use the internet in all areas of their lives.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to innovate but it’s important to take time to appreciate how far we’ve come and to acknowledge the incredible TshWi-Fi community of champions, innovators and ambassadors that we’ve become a part of,” says Mayor Msimanga, “thank you, the users, for your support, enthusiasm and feedback.”
Here’s to continuing making big ideas into reality.