I envisioned a warm, inviting setup, a place where students can feel safe and loved and happy. I wanted it to be a place where they would be excited to come to everyday, where they could see that learning is not only fun, but empowering.
With the help and support of People Reaching People, I was able to implement a pilot project in August of 2012. I setup a two week learning laboratory for children from one of the poorest regions of Madagascar. I along with another educator exposed the children to basic computer skills such as Keynote, Excel, iMovie, Word and basic keyboarding skills. Students who attended the program had never seen or had the opportunity to use a computer and learned these basic computer skills in a two week intensive course. The dream is to have this lab continually open and available to Malagasy children with the support of a lab administrator. I returned to two new locations in August of 2013, and 2014 with unbelievable success.
This is an opportunity that we take for granted, but that is unimaginable for Malagasy. Most of the children in the remote Tulear region of Madagascar do not attend school and have never had access to a computer. The acquisition of computer skills and proficiency in the skills taught in the laboratory will open doors to future opportunities and inspire them to reach for more than they ever thought possible.