Orphans Overseas | Karibu Centre

Team4Tech supports innovative educational technology projects with accredited non-profit organizations in developing countries around the world. Our first project was in Kenya May 3-17, 2013 with Orphans Overseas. More projects will be coming soon in Latin America and South Asia.

In a country ravaged by poverty, the Karibu Centre is a place of hope, refuge and learning for Kenya's youngest and most marginalized children. The center is operated by Orphans Overseas, a U.S.-based non-profit and a Team4Tech partner organization. Since 2008, the Karibu Centre — "Welcome Centre" in Swahili — has been providing education and nutrition for youngsters from the slum communities surrounding Thika, an industrial town near Nairobi.

The Karibu Centre is a place where Team4Tech volunteers make a powerful difference. More than 350 preschool children benefit from the center's educational programs, which aim to eliminate the achievement gap for young learners. New Intel-powered classmate PCs fill the center's computer lab as part of an innovative teaching and learning model that supports Kenya's 2030 development plan and provides valuable skills to disadvantaged children living in a technologically advanced world. Children served by the Karibu Centre receive daily, individualized exploratory learning in literacy, numeracy and science using Waterford Early Learning programs.

Without intervention, the children served at the Karibu Centre are typically at high risk for academic failure. Their schools have limited resources and equipment, and their classrooms have high student-teacher ratios. But the center's computer-based educational program is working, giving youngsters a valuable boost in terms of ongoing academic success. In just its first six months, this project has improved children's reading and math scores by 10 percent.

The Karibu Centre has also installed IT field teachers and computer labs at the four local primary schools in Thika that its children attend, enabling them to experience daily individualized adaptive computer learning. Today, the center provides an IT Teacher Training Academy for primary school teachers in partner schools during school holidays, as well as ongoing support and onsite training at individual schools. This effective program is making a significant difference in the lives of participating students, giving them hope for the future.

To have an even greater impact on children's lives, Karibu Centre has developed companion programs to complement the education component. For example, the center's kitchen serves 2,500 meals a week to help meet the nutritional needs of the orphans housed there, as well as children from surrounding poor communities. As many as eight teenage girls at a time receive safe housing during and after pregnancy in the center's resident program, where they learn parenting and vocational skills that prepare them to provide a stable home for their babies. In addition, 20 babies are nurtured in the center's abandoned baby residence until they can be placed with permanent families. These growing programs are creating lasting change in the lives of children and making a significant impact on communities surrounding the Karibu Centre.

If you are a member of the project team, click here to view our internal project collaboration page.