Thanks to a generous grant of $13,000 from the Collegiate Church Corporation, a private donation by tech entrepreneur Charlie Wood and $3,800 of in-kind services, in October we successfully upgraded the SPARC lab in Sazira Secondary School to a SPARC+ lab of 20 computers! The students have been very excited to see their school receive additional technology.

Social Media Manager Denis Christopher and ICT Manager Neema Lyimo installing additional Raspberry Pi computers

The Sazira Secondary School is located in the Bunda District in Tanzania near Lake Victoria. Our sister organization, the Potential Enhancement Foundation (PEF), was on-site to complete the expansion of the SPARC lab we initially installed in 2015. Along with more Raspberry Pi computers, PEF expanded the solar grid by adding six 120W solar modules and 7 new @100ah deep cycle maintenance-free batteries. In addition to an offline digital library (no internet required), office productivity software, and a coding program, this new lab also provides access to the digitized four-year Tanzanian secondary school curriculum from SHULE Direct, a Tanzanian company.

The PEF team giving technology training to local teachers

PEF provided a three-day training session on-site with the Sazira Secondary School staff. An ICT teacher also participated fully during the installation process. Impressed by these efforts, the Bunda Town Council sent a letter of appreciation commending our efforts at the Sazira School. The Council has pledged to both maintain the lab and conduct regular site visits to oversee the project.

The New SPARC+ Lab at Sazira Secondary School

Our award-winning SPARC (Solar Powered Access to Raspberry Computing) labs are currently installed in three schools located in the Bunda District: the Sazira, Kabasa, and Mekomariro Secondary Schools. As we head into 2020, a generous grant from the MoneyGram Foundation is enabling us to implement SPARC+ lab upgrades for the Kabasa and Mekomariro Schools. All three schools have students who will ultimately benefit from the technology education we provide by going on to pursue additional education and employment. The result is a raised standard of living in their home regions, which in turn leads to better health care and resources for generations to come.

The PEF team adding solar panels at Sazira Secondary School

We are passionate about our mission of enhancing education in some of the world’s remote regions. From our pilot expansion into the Peruvian Amazon to our attendance at the United Nations for Agenda 2030’s Sustainable Development Goals in Education, we have our eyes set on a future where resource deficits no longer block access to education. As an African Affiliate of the Open Source Initiative, we are also dedicated to utilizing open-source technology in every SPARC lab and giving students the opportunity to take innovation to new heights.

These efforts are only possible because of incredible supporters like you. Please join us in our efforts to install SPARC+ labs in other schools this upcoming year by donating today!