"Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today"
- Malcolm X
Haiti has currently a less than substantial educational system in place where material is orally memorized rather than learned and understood. As a result, many students are emerging from this system are lacking independent critical thinking skills. To help resolve this issue Enactus UOIT has partnered with a Nonprofit known as Grandi, (which operates locally in Haiti), to build a learning facility which will aim to teach students how to think critically. This facility is meant for students to attend as an “after-school program” and will be located on the grounds of an existing school. The building is to consist of different classes with programs for students to participate in. Our team is focusing on designing a curriculum and workshop activities that will promote critical thinking skills and an awareness for “how things work”. The project also involves designing the indoor and outdoor spaces of the facility and willing them with technology that is visibly to the students such as; a rainwater collection and filtration system, a shaded garden, and an aquaponics system to grow food indoors. UOIT students have the privilege of being exposed to an education with an emphasis on problem solving, we hope to share that education with the children of haiti.
Due to Haiti having such a hot dry climate throughout the year gardening is quite a challenge. One way to improve the survival of plants in this environment is to create artificial shade that will reduce the amount of sunlight the plants receive. Our goal is to build a simple outdoor shaded garden not only to grow fresh produce for the community, but most importantly to teach the students how to do it on their own. We are currently in the designing/prototyping phase and will update soon.
At certain times throughout the year rain is quite abundant, but in other months it becomes quite dry. This poses a challenge for maintaining gardens. Our solution is to design and implement a water collection system that will collect runoff from the roof and store it for use during the dry months.
In addition to an outdoor garden, we also plan to implement a simple aquaponics system indoors, to teach the students how organisms interact with one another (in this case fish, plants and bacteria) to form an ecosystem.