Crowdfunded STEM-education and junior maker outfit Afrimakers is still raising funds for its jaunt across the continent delivering Raspbery Pis and Arduino boards to tech hubs and schools in seven countries, but ahead of its planned departure in February its looking to recruit a network of volunteers who are willing to learn all about its program and keep it going once the team themselves have gone home.
I wrote extensively about Afrimakers’ history and the plans of its founder, Stefania Druga, last month. Now, with more than $11 000 (R110 000) in the bank to spend on Maker Boxes the organisation is looking for people to spread its good work. The whole program – which is already up and running in Nigeria – is based on a network theory of expansion. The Afrimakers leads take the first classes in which youngsters are taught programming and hacking skills, and at the same time train up a group of mentors in the same areas of expertise. Those mentors then train the next group, who go away and train another group and so the ideas spread.
No prior knowledge is necessary, so if you want to get involved there’s a breakdown of the entire trip itinerary here, and a sign up form here. Afrimakers will be visiting Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt, Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Lusaka, Cape Town, Lagos and Accra, dates to be confirmed. General areas of experimentation will cover health, sanitation, access to water and communications, all while having – apparently – a lot of fun.