Jun24

CODE KIDS AWARDED IN BRUSSELS! PROGRESS FOUNDATION BRINGS HOME THE EMERGING EUROPE AWARDS TROPHY IN THE FUTURE-PROOF EDUCATION CATEGORY

Categories //News, Projects

Bucharest, 24.06.2022. CODE Kids, Progress Foundation’s flagship project, receives international recognition at the highest level by winning first prize at the prestigious Emerging Europe Awards 2022 competition.  The project gives rural children the chance to join a robotics club for free, preparing them for the jobs of the future.

Students aged 10-14 have access to cutting-edge technology and specialised training for 2 years and learn to program in order to solve small problems identified in their community, while at the same time developing their knowledge of mathematics, logic and English, as well as soft skills. One of the memorable moments in CODE Kids’ 6 years of activity is using a common plastic barrel to support a smart irrigation device for greenhouses, an idea that 3 children from the coding club in Cerna, Tulcea county, have come up with. The simplicity of the project, the mix of high tech with what’s handy and the hands-on approach of the little programmers best illustrates how CODE Kids wants to influence the educational journey of village children.

“We are extremely happy to bring home this award. It belongs to the hundreds of people who make the CODE Kids project a success, because in our case it really does take an entire village to teach a child to code: from the national network of librarians, our group of technology trainers, the coordination team, to funders and alumni. We’re all convinced that the future will bring profound transformation, and the only chance to harness the huge potential of village children is to invest in their digital education. We also congratulate the other winners from Romania, it was a great evening for our civil society, where we received an important validation – our work is not going unnoticed and is being rewarded in Brussels.”

 Camelia Crișan, CEO Progress Foundation.

In 6 years of CODE Kids, over 4600 children from 32 counties have participated in the coding courses, and in 2022 there are 110 active clubs nationwide with 1200 children enrolled, turning public libraries into true community hubs. The project is being carried out with a grant from the Romanian-American Foundation and support from Aspen Institute Romania, Societe Generale Global Solutions Center and CEZ Vânzare.

About Emerging Europe Awards

The Emerging Europe Awards, part of the Future of Emerging Europe programme, is an annual celebration of the region’s achievements in sustainability, innovation and entrepreneurship. It recognises outstanding growth initiatives and the work of organisations and individuals, including global leaders who have contributed to the region’s success. The programme’s mission is to promote social, economic and democratic growth in 23 countries in Central and Eastern Europe, South Eastern Europe and the Southern Caucasus.

About Progress Foundation

The Progress Foundation is a non-governmental organization, founded in 1996 in Bistrita, which contributes to the development of community institutions, vulnerable individuals and groups and helps people become stronger through education, technology, research and innovation. The organisation supports people to evolve, realise their potential and achieve well-being in sustainable and resilient communities. Through its partnerships, Progress Foundation focuses on facilitating lifelong learning, transferring innovation, building IT and STEM skills, and developing new methodologies for participatory design and social inclusion. In achieving its goals and reaching every social group the organization uses public libraries and community spaces in villages and towns as focal points for learning and centers for social innovation. www.progressfoundation.ro

About CODE Kids Romania

“CODE Kids – Program the future of your community” is a free program developed by Progress Foundation, which proposes a digital literacy solution among children in rural and small urban areas. It was born in a context where almost 50% of rural children score below 5 in mathematics at the National Assessment.

The project aims to create a national coding and STEM movement in which children, young people, librarians and volunteers from rural and small urban areas develop their digital skills and get involved in their communities by solving creative digital tasks. Through training activities and workshops a window is opened to explore the digital world with its opportunities for development and learning, so that children aged 10-14 are encouraged to get actively involved and even pursue a career in technology. www.www.codekids.ro

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