The home for inspiring stories of next-gen problem-solvers.

Think of William Kamkwamba, who at 14, built a windmill to power his family’s home in Malawi using scrap materials and library books.

We celebrate and share the journeys of young minds like William, who are tackling real-world challenges and have the potential to better the world.

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Meet: Grace

“Tell Them We’re also Capable of Doing Things. Not Just The People Abroad.”

When Sam Quansah introduced Algo Peers in Grace’s school, the young lady didn’t know anything about Computing. But they took time to explain it to her, and when she got home, she told her mother about it, she was happy to enroll her, beginning Grace’s STEAM education journey.

It’s been over 2 years now since Grace joined Algo Peers. Today, the 13-year-old is a year away from completing Junior High School at the Police Basic School in Basakrom, where she lives with her parents and siblings. However, unlike the 2 years ago when Grace didn’t know anything about computers, she’s now familiar with concepts like computer science, robotics, AI, and algorithms: ‘I can now code my own program. I can start solving problems. And try to build robots bit by bit.

At Algo Peers, Grace and her colleagues have learned to use STEAM concepts in hands-on problem-solving projects. The goal has always been to train the next generation of problem solvers in Africa to be in tune with the current technology on which the world runs. Among the many projects she’s worked on at the makerspace, her favouritefavorite was ‘when I created a project called the soil moisture sensor. It also senses if your crop’s soil is dry or wet. It displays it on the micro:bit. I go and add the amount of water the crop needs. With this knowledge, Grace has improved in her home gardening, where she grows tomatoes and okra. 

Future, Support from Algo Peers and Parents

Algo Peers has helped me with projects and most of the things I need, especially practical work, and materials with which I can build my own stuff.

Grace knows what she wants to do: ‘I want to be a computer scientist.’ And she knows exactly what computer scientists do: ‘They solve real-life problems and code and build robots. I would love to program smart street lights so that in case there is no electricity, people can walk in the night with no fears.’

Currently, Grace and her teammate Charles are competing in the MIT Global AI Hackathon with their project. They focus on addressing climate change and sustainability in Ghana and neighbouring countries through renewable energy efficiency and responsible AI.

She also believes her Peer Learning Mentors are very supportive: ‘There are no wrong answers, they’ve told us. So we’re always bringing our ideas together.’ As a result, even outside the Algo Peers makerspace and discussion rooms, Grace can voice out her suggestions and contributions with no fear. This skill empowers children on their journey to becoming future problem solvers.

But every child needs, above all, the constant support of her parents to achieve her dreams. And the parents of this young lady are doing an excellent job to ensure Africa gets one problem-solver from them. According to Grace, ‘When I come home after some of the projects at the makerspace, they give me support.’

Final Words to other kids, parents, and Government

After benefitting from STEAM education, we asked Grace what she would love to tell other kids:

I’ll tell them to also know about coding. Also, tell them we’re also capable of doing things; not just the people abroad.

And to parents?

‘I’ll tell them not to stop their children from using their gadgets; not stop them from being creative on their computer.’

What about the Minister of Education?

The books are too much. They should start providing computers in all schools so that children can learn to code and do more creative things with the computer.

Ok, and the President?

‘Everything we do in school should be about computers.’

Grace’s favourite food is jollof rice with fried chicken. And as with all other stories, this has just begun. Will Grace stick to computer science? Will she desire something else in the future? Humans of Algo Peers will be back with updates on these next-gen problem solvers.

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