Botswana has become one of the few countries in which Airbus Foundation is to launch its famed Little Engineers Discovery Space programme.

In Botswana, Airbus will team up with Stanbic bank through its Accelerator Incubator and dare to Dream, thereby contributing to the Sustainable Development Goal of ‘Quality Education’ by the United Nations.

The initiative by Airbus Foundation aims to encourage students between 10 and 16 years to understand technology and develop interest for exciting careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). The launch date is set for May 2021 and will be delivered through a series of interactive online 3D modeling workshops, moon challenge and space programmes.

The programme seeks to engage up to 1,000 children in Botswana, educating on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

According to Larona Makgoeng, Head of the Stanbic Bank Botswana Accelerate Incubator, “This tripartite collaboration speaks to our continued and consistent efforts to collaborate and co-create towards progress intervention by Accelerate on behalf of those that this has been created to assist. It also aligns to Botswana’s National Vision of developing futuristic skills that can help transform the economy. We are grateful to work with Dare to Dream and Airbus Foundation to truly change lives through this venture.”

For its part, Stanbic Bank will procure 40 tablets for this tripartite partnership, a critical need for the rollout of the Little Engineer Discovery Space Online Program and further look at other avenues of making this more sustainable going forward, particularly in terms of the impact reach of this programme. This marks the first step towards truly investing in tangibly creating a platform for the realization of the dreams of young Batswana in the engineering and STEM space.

Another initiator of the programme, Kgomotso Phatsima and founder of Dare to Dream, said the programme was incredible. “The target for 2021 is to reach 1,000 students to understand and embrace technology from a young age and ignite a passion that could grow into an exciting STEM career. This will open up a world of possibilities for future careers in the technology and STEM space for Botswana’s youth, truly advancing into knowledge-based and skills-based futures that stand to benefit our Nation’s economy and further position Botswana as a centre for STEM excellence in years to come.”

Dare to Dream is a local social enterprise entity focused on developing future skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) for students across Botswana. The organisation was founded by Captain Kgomotso Phatsima, one of the first female Military Pilots in Botswana Defence Force and a woman who continues to provide firsts and inspiration to Batswana and indeed the world.

Airbus is an international reference in the aerospace sector. They design, manufacture and deliver industry leading commercial aircraft, helicopters, military transports, satellites and launch vehicles, as well as providing data services, navigation, secure communications, urban mobility and other solutions for customers on a global scale. The Little Engineer Discovery Space Online Program is just one of Airbus’ flagship community development initiatives through the Airbus Foundation.

Through the Accelerate Incubator, Stanbic Bank Botswana continues to deliver hallmark projects and investments working to change the lives of entrepreneurs, youth and start-ups in and across Botswana through nuanced support, exposure and investment.

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