Technology is probably the most common aspect of the modern era yet unfortunately a rather untapped reservoir in our nation. We do see the latest smart phone or the classiest tablet handed over to month old babies, but sadly our children’s understanding and usage of technology is confined to entertainment.
Project 50 Kids is an initiative taken by university students in Lahore which envisions making technology accessible to every child par all sorts of discrimination BUT in its true sense. Children at a very early age need to understand the actual power technology beholds. We need to make self-exploratory learning second nature to our youth in order to see our future generations excel at an international level. Project 50 Kids reaches out to students from low-cost public and private schools with the intention of making them digitally literate while enhancing their thought processes’ by helping them unearth their creativity and develop critical thinking skills. Once the world ‘out-side the box’ begins existing for these students, learning for them becomes a process independent of teachers and institutes.
Project 50 Kids achieves their goals by conducting annual summer camps and series of monthly workshops across various schools in Pakistan. Each year volunteers from different undergraduate programs are pooled together to help execute the program.
‘We aim to connect with as many students as possible and to equip them with enough knowledge about using computers that they can learn on their own in future and at the same time we as a team can learn from them’ says Managing Director Yahya Ali, a BSCS student from FAST-NU. He alongside his fellow co-founders and batch mates Sheikh Hamza and Moeez Zahid, piloted the project in 2015 when 150 students were brought on board with the help of 20 volunteer teachers at 1 school. This year, P50K reached out to 550 students across 4 schools in Lahore and Faisalabad involving 60 volunteer teachers.
‘I have been given a chance to provide the society with something positive and constructive. We have enabled several dozen students to realize and establish their position as an international computer literate individual’ says Director Product Development, Moeez. The progress seen in the past year with regards to the number of students & volunteers involved and the expansion of the long-term team is commendable.
Director Evaluations Hamza says ‘When the project was conceptualized, I was skeptical of how well we shall be able to execute our ideas. The appreciable progress our team has managed, makes me proud to be a part of Project 50 Kids.” For the coming year Project 50 Kids is expanding to Karachi, Islamabad and Peshawar.
They are currently accepting applications for City Manager Program, a Fellowship opportunity that will allow students to replicate the Project 50 Kids Lahore based model in their own city. For this amazing opportunity to head the entire project you may apply at: www.project50kids.com/cpm.
Program details are available on www.project50kids.com/teachtech.
Be the change you wish to see!