Check out the Pod Facebook group page at http://wwww.facebook.com/groups/empowerpods
Inspired by the difficulties of refugee girls in finding a community and continuing their education, we developed EmpowerPods to create a community of girls that can connect
More than 3 million school-age child refugees have no school to attend
-EmpowerPods connect girls to a structured learning environment that encourages collaboration with other girls and women in their community and self-discovery
-Girls film videos sharing in their own words what they are learning, interviews of other girls and women in their connunity and other activities. These videos are shared with other pods connecting these communities of girls learning about the same thing.
-Girls learning the same topic can connect with eachother and view user generated content in Facebook groups
-In circumstances where there is limited or no internet connection availible, the pods have stored content which can continue to engage and educate girls. When internet becomes available, videos that the girls have selected to share are sent to the other pods.
-the pod creates a community, has positive content and reminds the girls that there is hope for a brighter future outside of the refugee camp
-the pod prepares the girls for future success and to reach their dreams through educational segments that fit their interests and aspirations
What it does
Delivers and synchronizes educational content and students via USB/Bluetooth at distinct locations to individual phones. Provides a full classroom experience while being totally offline and portable.
Challenges we ran into while building it
None of us have Android phones so we formatted it for an iPhone for the time being, can't auto add girls to facebook groups so added shared content directly to pods and invited girls to join the pod's fb group to make sure content is accessible, trying to account for every difficulty the girls face: location, language, community, accessibility
Accomplishments we're proud of
Figuring out how to identify different phones that connect to the computer, developing a really slick UI and good idea,
What we learned
We learned so much about refugee campus and more about the typical timeline of refugee girls, about the feelings that girls have in those situations and how they want to be a part of something bigger than themselves, girls like to be in control over their learning tools and that they want to be empowered and in charge of their own learning, they have dreams and interests just like us!
What's next for EmpowerPods
Eventually having girls teach girls. Reviewing the videos that the girls send with what they've learned so that the content that the girls watch can have more user developed content in it.
Having the pods detect girls in the area and notify indiviuals to get together at a certain time to talk about what they area learning and connect with eachother
Distributing pods to at risk locations so that girls can get introduced to the pod system and know to find a pod if they find themselves at a refugee camp. Also connects girls in camps to normal girls.
How we built it