'Dreams That Could Be' fundraiser in Brooklyn, NY
by -- JULIA TOFAN
As part of the Dreams That Could Be project, we're partnering with Cercle Social to tell the stories of students in Benin who are changing their lives with education.
Inspired by children with big dreams, like Eugene Adihounde, who aspires to be a policeman, and Ella Agoundo, who aspires to be a doctor, this project is sharing the stories of children who are overcoming great adversity to get an education.
Before starting the project, 87% of interviewed students said they never touched a real computer.
778 students have registered to take the computing courses from 2012 to 2014 and the demand keeps rising. Participants have been evaluated through writing and practical exams. The analysis of these results showed a 65% improvement of grades for the second year of implementation.
In 2016, Cercle Social non-profit will transform old shipping containers into classrooms powered by the Raspberry Pi, in Bénin. This idea from Samsung called The solar powered internet school has solar panels on the roof that can generate nine hours of electricity a day. We will use 40 feet long container to build a portable classroom that can fit up to 21 students. The school can be moved by truck so that students in remote areas with little or no access to electricity can benefit from the curriculum and internet connectivity.
In the 1990s, Bénin was notorious for having on of the world’s lowest primary school enrolment rates. Today, almost all Beninese children have access to education and a growing number are graduating from primary school. According to a Development Progress Report by the Overseas Development Institute:
The African Union Headquarters in New York City welcomed Cercle Social on April 13th 2016. The nonprofit leaders pitched the mobile shipping container lab and the Raspberry Pi to the Power African Youth Initiative entrepreneur drive. Thank you to the organizers and all participants. #PAY #AFRICANUNION #CERCLESOCIAL #RASPBERRYPI
On Tuesday, August 9th, 2016, few members of Cercle Social met with Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson at the Meadows School of the Arts of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Congresswoman Johnson represents the 30th Congressional District of Texas in the United States House of Representatives and is also a member of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. She has been an outspoken advocate for the need to invest in science, technology, engineering, and math education (STEM).