In the next two weeks Oct 18- Nov 1, Team4Tech volunteers from Facebook, Coursera, Google and Intersol will be using their tech know-how to help build out after-school STEM programs for students from Kenyatta and Barracks Primary schools in Thika, Kenya. They will train teachers to create, deploy and maintain their own after-school STEM program using computers, selected math and science adaptive software, and 21st century teaching methods that foster collaboration, critical thinking and creative problem solving. The members of this talented team are giving not only their time, but their high tech skills pro bono to help further the education goals of the nonprofit Orphans Overseas and their Karibu Centre, a place of hope, refuge and learning for children from the slum communities surrounding Thika near Nairobi.
Inspired by Pro Bono Week, the global celebration of professional services for the public good (Oct. 19-25), we wanted to take time to celebrate and thank our volunteers in the field now, as well as our alumni, and our corporate partners who support this amazing service learning experience for employees. They set a tremendous example and should be an inspiration for all tech companies in the Silicon Valley and beyond.
Team4Tech was founded in 2013 to improve the quality of education in communities worldwide that face limited access to resources by leveraging the unique, global impact of education-focused nonprofit organizations. We match technology industry volunteers with two-week immersive service opportunities that leverage their skills and passions to make a difference in education. Team4Tech provides volunteers with valuable hands-on experiences and professional development training on topics such as human-centered design, creative problem solving, extreme collaboration, and leadership – skills that are useful during the project and at work. In 2014, Team4Tech has deployed more than 65 volunteers from 8 tech companies including Box, Facebook, Google, Intel, Intuit, and VMware on 7 projects in 5 countries (Vietnam, India, Tanzania, South Africa, and Cambodia), benefitting over 10,000 students and teachers. You can join a Team4Tech project individually or work with your HR and CSR teams to have 5-15 employees collaborate on a customized Team4Tech project.
Not only do companies and volunteers help jumpstart projects and enable NGOs to implement critical edtech projects, this service learning experience, according to volunteer surveys, positively impacts those contributing their pro bono skills – giving them improved understanding of emerging markets, greater leadership skills, a life changing experience, and an increased desire to do more volunteer work in their future.