Thursday, August 13, 2015

Pi-oneer Program Update: Visiting Zanzibar

From left: Abdulla, Mathias, Othman &
driver Mr. Faki
In April, we told you about the exciting grant we received from the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the Segal Family Foundation to support the installation of the Pi-oneer system in 56 schools in Tanzania.

The Pi-oneer is a Raspberry Pi computer loaded with offline educational content combined with a mobile projector and solar recharging unit. We're excited to now update you on our progress!

We are working closely with the Tanzanian government to plan for this project. We will be implementing the program in four regions of the country - two on the mainland and two in Zanzibar.

Powering Potential will place a Pi-oneer system in 20 schools in each of the two mainland regions, and 16 systems in the Zanzibar archipelago, for a total of 56 schools. Each system will be placed in a rural government secondary school.

Albin Mathis, Powering Potential Country Director recently visited the Zanzibar schools with Ministry of Education-Zanzibar (MoEZ) Officers as part of the program's pre-installation procedure. Ali O. Abdulla, Networking and System Admin (MoEZ ICT dept.) and Ranmadhan Othman, Student Services Officer (MoEZ), accompanied me on the trip.

The Zanzibar archipelago is comprised of two main islands (Unguja and Pemba) and smaller islets. One of the schools is reachable only by boat and another one only when the tide is out and a pathway opens up. Below are Albin's photos and captions from the school visits:

The experience of crossing the ocean to Tumbatu Island

Uzi is small Island in Unguja.
 The main transport to the island is by car or foot. 

Another marker outside of one of the schools. 

Ministry Officers received coconuts from students
at Head of School's office during the visit.

Albin drinking coconut given to him
from the students.

Having the new experience of
heading towards Fundo Island, Pemba

Seated from left: Khamis, Salim, and Issa
Standing from left: Kitwana and Kombo

Lastly, special thanks to Khamis Yusuph Khamis, Headmaster of the Shungi School; Mtomwa Salim, an assistant; Asya Issa, Director of Secondary Education at MoEZ; Mr. Slaum Kitwana; the Officer in charge of MoEZ Pemba, and Mwalimu Haji Kombo, the Regional Education Officer for Kunsini Pema. We wouldn't have been able to do this without your help!