Save the Children’s Digitisation Drive: Meet Robert Kadikilo, our first T4D Specialist

Monday 1 November 2021


February 2021, Robert Kadikilo joined Save the Children Tanzania to take on the ambitious Technology for Development (T4D) role as the first ever specialist focusing on driving digital transformation.

Save the Children Tanzania being one of the first country offices to recruit a T4D specialist, envisions the role will support come up with digital innovations that drive development and humanitarian programming work to increase efficiency, reach more marginalized children and youth and have greater impact. Robert talks about how he takes on the challenge and the lessons he has drawn so far.  

How does it feel to kick start the digitisation process within the organisation?

As a young Tanzanian who is digital savvy, with a passion in enterprising industry, I feel proud to get this opportunity to lead this innovative role driving Save the Children Tanzania ambition to become a technology driven organisation. 

How is the role different from the normal IT specialists’ role?  

T4D requires understating Save the Children programming, thinking and innovating on areas where different projects are experiencing pain points. It is a more proactive role focusing on advancing the use of technology to bring solutions to scale, different from a normal IT role which requires one to support technical staff in their daily technology usage after they face problems. The role requires you to have special interest in technology for development. 

What would you say is the vision for this role at Save the Children?

With Tanzania increasing technology, internet and mobile phones penetration, Save the Children believes it is the right time to effectively utilize technology in their programming to bring solutions to challenges affecting children and youth. Also, considering lessons learnt from COVID-19, the organisation realised the need to change its strategies and approaches to adopt innovative ways of working and programming. A move which was highly supported by both Global and Regional offices digitisation drive. And of course, the renewed focus on youth, in our 2022-24 Country Strategy Plan, who are tech savvy and this is the best way to connect and interact with them. 

Based on your experience since you joined, what would you say are the future benefits of having this role in place?

With a T4D role, I see Save the Children Tanzania being able to streamline most of its processes and innovate solutions using different technological solutions, this will help the organization reach more children and youth, more efficiently and have greater impact.

What part of your work do you like most?

I like the part where I get to think, innovate and come up with solutions that actually help the organisation to achieve its ambitious programming goals.

Save the Children Tanzania Country Director’s take:

“We are very excited to be among the first countries to recruit a Technology for Development (T4D) Specialist role. This role helps Save the Children Tanzania in its digitisation journey and we already see how this role is taking strides. We have taken the challenge and we are happy to lead the way for others to learn”.