In the town of Parkwood, a suburb of Cape Town in South Africa, a mere 20% of residents have finished high school and 30% do not complete primary school. High levels of gang violence, crime, racism, and unemployment ensue, and access to technology is extremely limited. This is why Stanford University grad students Morgan Abbett, Adrienne Johnson, Christine Li, and Marveliz Santos partnered with South African education nonprofit Bottomup to build Parkwood Technology Centre (PTC), a central learning hub at Parkwood Primary School that will house computers and provide Internet connectivity to students and the community. To help combat high unemployment and dropout rates, there will be a program of classes and trainings taught by local experts to empower beneficiaries with practical computer knowledge and marketable coding skills. In the small pilot program completed by Bottomup, the percentage of Grade 3 learners passing the national exams doubled from 26% to 51%!
Parkwood Primary School, however, experiences frequent theft that is detrimental to the already underfunded school. So our AWB grant will fund the construction of a strong security room to protect technology in the center, and to ensure the sustainability of computer programs.