Outreach in Haiti - July 2018

As part of the Marie Curie program, I organized an outreach event on Renewable Energies for disadvantaged children aged 10-15 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, which took place in the first week of July 2018.

Haiti being the poorest country in the American continent, and in the world, suffers from various problems – one of the most important ones being the lack of electricity.

Therefore, I decided to teach the younger generations about Renewable Energies and how they can make a difference, in line with other initiatives from the European Union - https://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/countries/haiti_en

Outreach in Haiti - July 2018

One of my aims was also the promotion of STEM subjects among girls, and I made sure that they also participated.  In the end, over half of the children I taught were girls!  Furthermore, to make this sustainable I also asked some adults to be present too to learn hands-on experiences and try to, in turn, teach other kids in the future.

I designed the teaching plan as follows: first I explained the concept of energy in general terms. Then I talked about electricity and electromagnetism and the difference between renewable and non-renewable energies (and the importance of the former). Later, I showed them the different types of renewable energies there are. Lastly, I challenged them to connect everything they had previously learned to come up with ideas and try to help their own communities. I did all this in a very interactive way, and I always let the children have some time to experiment themselves. I always encouraged them to ask questions.

For instance, some of the experiments they did were turning a non-magnetic nail into a magnet by using wire and batteries, building a solar oven, extracting electricity from lemons and potatoes (which they specially liked) or even building their Stirling engine.