Hi, I’m Hayley and I will be running the NYC half marathon on the 18th of March 2018 to raise money to provide educational tools for students in a remote area of Sri Lanka.
In October 2016, two of our start up companies’ started their journey to Sri Lanka ready to change the world of our business. To our surprise, the last 17 months have not only transformed our business, the people of Sri Lanka have inspired us to make a meaningful contribution to the community.
In line with the UN's 4th Sustainable Development Goal by 2030 - Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all, it was easy for us to see where we wanted to make a difference.
Last year, one of our teams had the privilege of visiting the Maningamuwa school, to understand what it is like to learn and live in remote areas.
We went there to see how kids learned, and it was us that walked away more educated.
Some of the things we found were:
1. Students in rural communities often have less opportunity for further education or employment.
2. All students sit for a standardised scholarship exam in Year 5 that determines their eligibility for scholarships in urban schools. For some this is the only opportunity they have to leave rural educational centres.
3. Families will regularly mortgage their houses in order to pay for group tutors to provide after hours tuition to maximise performance for the Year 5 exam.
4. There is limited to no access to the world outside their community.
5. Maningamuwa school is rich in culture, kindness but poor in technology.
Inspired to make a change and working alongside Prof. Asoka Dissanayake, the team created an outreach program which sought to engage with students in Year 4 to understand ways to provide educational support through technology.
In October, the team rolled out the first outreach program and for those involved, it was one of the most rewarding projects delivered. (check out the video!)
The problem we’re solving
Learning should be limitless. It should be without boundary, prejudice or privilege.
To provide an opportunity to learn through technology where there is none and we intend to solve this problem by;
1. Creating a computer based game that focuses on making learning fun and improving performance in the Year 5 examination.
2. Providing infrastructure to equip the school with basic hardware such as laptops, desktops and tablets.
How are we doing this
A team of engineers donate their time every weekend to develop a game specifically targeted at individuals to improve learning and performance in the Year 5 exam. They do this freely and with the intent to improve accessibility to education and have fun.
This is just the starting point for us. One small step in the road to making a big difference.
How you can help?
Our dream is to revolutionise the opportunities for rural students throughout the country – one school at a time and this is where you can help!
We need to raise US$11,310 (AU$15,000) in order to:
1. Buy appropriate hardware, electricity and employ two staff for a year. (US$10,000)
2. Be guaranteed a place in the run through aligning with the NY Children’s Charity. (US$1310 - https://www.runwithtfk.org/Events/Details/101)
And the kicker, if we get to our goal of funds raised, it will be matched by a generous donor!
How will we use the funds
1. Hardware (US$6000)
2. 1 x security guard so the computer room can be open and safe outside of school hours. (US$2000 pa)
3. 1 x tutor to work after school hours to help with any homework or studies as well as up skill teachers on the technology. (US$2000 pa)
4. US$1310 donation to New York Kids Charity. (entry fee is separate and borne by me)
If ‘kicker’ is achieved, this money will be used to fund a second school project or build additional infrastructure.
All expenses outside of the fundraising will be borne by me independently. (including entry fee to the run, travel, accommodation, food and beverage)
All expenses to develop our platform, learning, development plans and software has been donated by our incredibly talented engineering company, Atlas Labs.
Teachers and parents will also attend educational sessions run by the Atlas Labs team at no cost to ensure engagement and comfort.
A full breakdown of spend will be made available upon request by any donor.
$10,000 is our first milestone. We want to use this pilot to really test the logic we have around this change.
Please note due to funding page - Pledges will be in AUD - Thank you