Below you will find: a summary of our Inspire Girls pilot in Rwanda, bios of the two teachers leading this pilot in Rwanda, a bio of our Field Associate in Rwanda, and a summary of WCE’s work in Rwanda.
RWANDA: Inspire Girls teachers Beatrice Nyinawingeli in Remera, Rwanda and Carole Zei in McHenry, Illinois are now starting to have their students meet with each other. They are each having 15-20 of their 8-11 year old students meet via SeeSaw from each other’s classrooms once every 3 weeks. The USA class meet during their mid-day recess in the school day and the Rwanda class at the end of the school day. The USA students are mostly girls and the Rwanda students are more of a mix. They began by having their students become familiar with the 5 Inspire Girls teacher resources and then had the students meet each other, share about their respective schools and communities. In the second call they shared about what are family, cultural, and community expectations with regard to girls pursuing careers in technology. They both completed and shared answers to the WCE survey questions. In the third call they selected the teacher resource that they want to work on together. They have selected to work together on resource #1 and then #5. Their students have the option to make a change to the WCE list if they think of a better resource for teachers in Africa to inspire girls to pursue careers in technology. The students will explore if they can archive the conversation on SeeSaw and post them on YouTube. This pairing is being assisted by Mirella Shannon, a volunteer business tech mentor, and by Daniel Turikumwe, WCE Field Associate for Rwanda.
Beatrice Nyinawingeli has been a teacher in Remera in the east of Rwanda for the past 24 years since 1993 rotating from one village to another. In 2014, she worked with the Amahoro Foundation to establish Peace Keepers Academy, which now has 120 students from Nursery School till P3 where she is now teaching elementary along with being head teacher. Her students are from 6 to 9 years old. They can speak some English. Beatrice is married and her husband manages the overall Peace Keeprs organization that is over the school. She and her students are excited to be paired in the Inspire Girls pilot with Carole Zei and some of her students in McHenry, Illinois, USA.
Carole Zei has been with Riverwood Elementary School in McHenry, Illinois USA for six years as their technology teacher. Beginning this school year, she is the Innovation Coach, facilitating the new technology curriculum, which includes programming robots, using K’nex and Zometools for building, Legos, digital storytelling, and designing 3D objects, just to name a few. She teaches students of ages 7-11. Before teaching, she was an executive assistant for a variety of businesses including law firms, a chamber of commerce, and a horse racing venue. She earned her Masters’ of Arts in Education at Roosevelt University and her bachelors in technology management at Judson University. She and her husband have three adult children. She is eager to have her primary school students participate in the Inspire Girls pilot of World Computer Exchange with students from the Peace Keepers Academy in Remera, Rwanda.
Daniel Turikumwe: WCE’s Field Associate in Rwanda. He represents WCE in Rwanda and is moving toward developing a WCE Chapter in Kigali. He is our contact point in Rwanda for our WCE Inspire Girls pilot. He is a global auditor for One Acre Fund in Rwanda, Burundi, Malawi and Zambia. He works with TECH IMPEX Ltd in Kigali. He has Five years of experience in community development and poverty. He was the Programs Director of Early Child Education Program for the AMAHORO Foundation. He served as the program coordinator of the Church and Community Mobilization Program in the Kibungo Diocese of the Anglican Church, where he focused on improving the lives of most vulnerable families through Bible study, capacity building, health, livelihoods, water and sanitation, environment protection and modern agriculture, and 620 saving and credit associations that he started. He is the Founder of African Alliance on Cancer (AAC) where he mobilizes the public on fighting against cancer. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with specialization in Finance from the University of Rwanda; he is currently pursuing his CPA and Project Plus. He has served as a volunteer for several organizations including Dell Social Innovation Challenge (DSIC) and he holds many local and international awards such as the Top World Young Outstanding Leader for DSIC and Rwanda National Police Youth Award. He is a motivational speaker and preacher. In 2016, he was a Mandela Washington Fellow for Young African Leaders at Duquesne University. He is past president of the Rwanda Anglican Student Association.
WCE Context in Rwanda: WCE previously sent a small shipment of 25 computers to Rwanda to connect 5 schools with 3,500 students over the years. Since then Rwanda has implemented a policy of not allowing the importation of any used or refurbished computers that are older than 2 years old upon arrival at their port. WCE and our Field Associate are exploring piloting a youth-led computer refurbishing center in Rwanda. Inspire Girls: Rwanda is one of five African countries where is piloting this WCE project. The pilot has pairs of teachers with their students co-developing and field testing one of 5 resources for teachers interested in inspiring girls to pursue careers in technology. In each pilot country, WCE is allied with the iEARN country affiliate, which helps train teachers who are new to the internet and involves them in online experiential learning projects. WCE is interested in working with schools affiliated with iEARN-Rwanda as we have in 11 other countries. After the resources are ready, they will be widely disseminated through WCE’s network in 78 developing countries including 41 interested groups in Rwanda. WCE is interested in working on this project with Peace Corps Volunteers in Rwanda as we have in 17 other countries. WCE has a philanthropic partner in New Horizons Computer Learning Centers that has a Center in Kigali. WCE Development Officers for Rwanda: Carey Radebaugh and Semra Seifu. WCE Regional Manager for Francophone Africa: Sarah Pouezevara. WCE Field Associate in Rwanda: Daniel Turikumwe. (last updated: October 2017)