Imagine a country where fewer than 30% of students ever receive a 6th-grade education. Where 90% of girls have either never received an education or dropped out by the time they are 12. Here, a mere 400 miles off the US coast sits the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, and the 3rd poorest nation in the world– this is HAITI. A country where 80% of the population lives on less than $2 a day and no government funding is allocated for education for a rapidly growing population in a world becoming equally more divided by a gap of knowledge and opportunity.
In a country battered by tragedies; from colonization to slavery, dictatorships to political corruption, hurricanes to earthquakes, education seems to be the only way to fight a cycle of poverty and injustice.
Three and a half years ago, by chance we got involved with the only schools for Girls, College Regina Assumpta – a Catholic school with a 60-year track record of empowering girls by providing them with a solid education. A school with 1200 girls attending from kindergarten through High school and a small Educational College training the next generation of teachers.
Since 2014 the school has been implementing a robotics program, a program I have been heavily involved with since its inception. The robotics program fits at a school focused on providing more opportunities and possibilities for girls. As Kofi Annan, the former secretary general of the UN, said: “Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress in every society, in every family.” By promoting girls education in Haiti, College Regina Assumpta attempts to close the educational gap for girls.