Innovation: Africa is an Israeli nonprofit that empowers communities in African countries to access solar energy. Solutions include lighting schools and hospitals, and bringing water to villages by building solar-powered water pumps. The social and economic benefits of these solutions are myriad.
Nominated by siblings Jacob (Grade 2) and Talia (Grade 4), Innovation: Africa is one of the honored organizations that our students are studying during the 2019 Rashi Purim Tamchui Project. Over the course of two weeks in February and March, students in Grades 2-8 will learn about the needs of children and their families in communities without access to power and clean water and how Innovation: Africa empowers these communities to improve their standard of living.
On Thursday, February 28, Emily Schoenfeld, a representative from Innovation: Africa, came to Rashi to share with our students the work that she and her colleagues do. She began her day by sharing Innovation: Africa’s mission with parents.
Leading up to her visit, students were asked to consider questions to help them better engage with the day:
- How do we decide one village from another to engage and work in?
- How do we accommodate the entire community’s wishes/needs when designing a water or light project?
- How do we ensure the sustainability/ continuation of our projects in the long run?
- What activities can you complete in your daily life without access to energy or clean water?
In her presentation with Second Graders, she shared the story of Innovation: Africa’s founder Sivan Ya’ari’s daughter:
Over the course of the day, Emily met with each grade as well as a group of representatives from the Middle School Student Government.
“I was so impressed with the questions that the students had,” Emily reflected at the end of the day. “I meet with university students whose questions aren’t as well thought-out and poignant.”