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As part of its Prioritizing Reform, Innovation and Opportunities for Reaching Indonesia’s Teachers, Administrators, and Students (PRIORITAS) program, USAID Indonesia had a requirement to print, bind, kit, and deliver 7.5 million reading books, workbooks, and teacher guides to elementary schoolchildren and teachers in roughly 11,000 schools across Indonesia within five months. A key goal of the program is to develop capacity by improving education management and governance in Indonesian schools. StratComm had directly relevant experience in fulfilling a requirement such as this, and we knew that we were one of the few companies with the agility, expertise, and partners who could pull off this logistically complicated project. USAID agreed and awarded us a contract worth $6.2 million.
Building upon our experience with our USAID Tanzania project to print, bind, and deliver 2.5 million math and science textbooks to secondary schoolchildren in that country, StratComm provided the necessary logistics and manufacturing to deliver and distribute three times as many books in Indonesia. We collaborated with our partner companies, which provided specially manufactured post-consumer recycled paper, high-volume printing, kitting, and logistics services. For this project, books had to be “kitted” into individual plastic boxes, with specified bundles of books placed in more than 24,000 watertight boxes. This required the use of an electronic barcoding system, which allowed workers to identify and pack the correct books into each box. In addition, the boxes had to be specially manufactured to specifications to ensure a watertight seal was present inside the lid of each to prevent damage to the books. The kitting process added another layer of complexity to this project, which we deftly handled.
Our team of project managers once again proved its ability to bring many moving parts together, while closely monitoring quality control, ensuring that each of the millions of books printed met the client’s specification and the boxes contained the correct supply of books. We updated USAID on our progress on a weekly basis, as we feel that timely and frank communication is critical to the success of any project, especially one as complex as this. Ultimately, the books were printed, kitted, and shipped ahead of schedule. By providing these leveled reading books and teacher and student workbooks to Indonesian schoolchildren, USAID hopes to help improve their reading skills and supplement and enrich existing classroom instruction. StratComm is honored to be providing this important service and assisting in this critical capacity building initiative.
"[StratComm has] helped USAID, as partners, improve literacy in Indonesia by publishing and delivering 7 1/2 million reading textbooks … There are 250 million kids on the planet who don’t know how to read … Working in the education space is really helpful to our mission, but even more importantly, it’s helpful to all those kids who are learning how to read."
- Eric Postel, USAID, in a speech given at the USAID 2nd Annual Veterans International Small Business Opportunities Conference (VISBOC) in Arlington, Va.