Arduino supports PAAJAF Foundation
Good morning everybody! Today we’d like to introduce PAAJAF, a non profit organization, based in Ghana and working closely with a poor, in socio-economic terms, rural community in Gwabe, a suburb of Accra.
Since April 2007, the organization, through the PAAJAF Foundation, has been providing humanitarian services for neglected children, youth, and women. Its founders, Mr. Philip Kyei Appiah and Ms. Juliet Afua Yayera Adusei, envisioned that all members of the community should be given equal opportunities, and the foundation is committed to diversity to help develop their programs.
In the Gwabe community there’s only one public school and 19000 children under 13 years of age. This obviously means massively overcrowded classes and very little chance that teachers can give individual attention to single child’s problems. Many children are at risk of getting no opportunity and no education at all, because of poverty and because of lack of schools and educational tools, unless they can afford a private school, which is very often not the case in this Commuity of Accra. No education or poor education of course means no way of accessing more qualified jobs and missing the opportunity to improve their quality of life standards, and here life standards are really in need of improvement. WE also have to take into consideration the fact that once adults, many young people will need to help sustain their old parents, and in this regard no access to qualified job means no way to help the old ones survive in a dignified manner.
In Gwabe 45% of the residents are unemployed, with an even higher unemployment rate among young people.
And IT is of course one of the areas where qualified jobs would be available and that would help upward mobility for the residents.
The Project identified by Arduino and sponsored is that for IT training, providing 35 teenagers (14-17 years old) with access to basic IT training and Literacy and Math classes, enabling them to continue in education, although they come from a rural community with little or no access to Internet and Computers.
PAAJAF stands for “Providing Adolescents and Adults Jobs for Advancement in Future”, and in this perspective, Arduino is fit to help the population of Ghana acquire easy instruments to develop projects, both for one’s personal use and for eventual industrial uses. In this sense, we’re helping PAAJAF grow a generation of IT qualified workers, and, eventually, makers!
So far, our help has gone to help renovate the premises for the school and in providing the boards for the school students’ use in studying and developing their own projects.
The premises for the school was in quite a bad status before a good renovation job was done.
A hard renovation work was necessary to make the building accessible and fit for young children and adults:
Brilliant and happy colors were used to paint the walls and make it nice:
The school premises now look beautiful:
And the classrooms have started taking their shape: this is, of course, for younger children
Teachers have started working together
And children attending!
Walking a long way from home to school
Attending their lessons:
And the school is now ready to host its FREE courses for teens in IT.
Soon more help will come in the form of courses and other materials to be given to the school to start its program of IT teaching and to give a better future to teens in the Gwabe community. Stay tuned for more information!
by Silvia Bianchi