Updated Mar 30, 2019

EngStarter - Engineering for Social Good

http://www.engineering4socialgood.com/

Claudio Freitas

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EngStarter is an open-source hardware educational kit designed to provide students with necessary tools, and pedagogies to build real-world solutions to their problems while learning fundamental concepts of electronic circuits and programming.

EngStarter is an engineering kit that allows students to measure environmental variables through sensors attached to the systems, measure circuit efficiency, analyse physical constants, and examine potential applications beyond what is offered in this educational kit. After replicating the pre-designed projects, students can use the same tools and components to conceptualize and implement furth...
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EngStarter is an engineering kit that allows students to measure environmental variables through sensors attached to the systems, measure circuit efficiency, analyse physical constants, and examine potential applications beyond what is offered in this educational kit. After replicating the pre-designed projects, students can use the same tools and components to conceptualize and implement further applications. The EngStarter integrates existing electronic sensors and open development boards through a new design. These technologies consist of ArduinoTM and Raspberry PiTM development boards, sensors, actuators, electronic components, and connectivity modules. Each kit contains basic components and sensors to build solutions for the problem spaces of water, food, and energy. The research team also provides basic codes, libraries, and tutorials to facilitate project integration and rapid prototyping. The sensors and connectors are color-coded and reusable so that students can easily identify the correct way to connect each sensor in the circuit board and try different configurations with the same components. Students can build different applications using the same kit by following basic multimedia explanations that are available online and offline to support educators and guide students to master difficult electronic concepts. The existing possible applications with EngStarter are addressed to food, energy, and water problems.
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Stage 4: Transition to Scale

The project emerged as a result of three years of experience in offering university-level engineering to more than 50 refugee learners in Azraq camp Jordan and Kakuma camp in Kenya where we could validate, enhance and test our concept on-site.

Focus Areas:

Refugees, Agriculture, Technology and 1 MoreSEE ALL

Refugees, Agriculture, Technology and EducationSEE LESS

50
Customers
5
Employees
$12,500
Funds Raised to Date

Problem

Displaced populations, particularly refugees in constrained camp settings and low-resource urban environments, have limited access to engineering, science, and technology courses. Existing content is difficult to adapt because it is not applicable to local engineering challenges. Consequently, students do not have the motivation to engage in courses or even do not find any application for the projects developed in class. We present here a solution to this problem, the EngStarter.

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Solution

EngStarter is a hardware educational kit designed to provide students with necessary tools, and pedagogies to build real-world solutions to their problems while learning concepts of electronic circuits, programming, and the internet of things. It is the technical education that refugee learners and students in fragile host communities are looking for - an innovative engineering tool emerged from local practice with potential to impact at scale and bring innovation to Refugee Education.

Target Beneficiaries

The EngStarter is designed to support learning in a refugee context and addresses, in particular, the needs of refugees in more remote camp settings like Azraq and Kakuma refugee camps, but is scalable to the needs for technical solutions in urban settings as well. The first and primary target population is the pipeline of students in the Azraq and Kakuma camp who have already shown interest in this course but who have not been able to engage in the class before the EngStarter.

Mission and Vision

EngStarter helps students to apply engineering to some of the world’s biggest by focusing on social problems for which engineering and students’ own creativity have the potential to offer meaningful solutions. The problems that guide the EngStarter’s application are inspired by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, specifically, SDGs 4, 6, and 7.

Competitive Advantage

The EngStarter is unique because it combines a series of features that make it useful and socially relevant for accessible engineering courses. By using our kit, students not only build socially relevant solutions but also learn how to make it by themselves. Our innovation’s impact not only enhances the quality and availability of engineering programs in emergencies, but it also increases student motivation and engagement in these settings. Our kit provides a complete set of components, devices, and tools that will help students to comprehend basic to advance theoretical concepts. Our team seeks to create innovative education technologies that solve important problems and help people in their daily lives in the camp and urban contexts. We believe that engineering education can promote innovation and further our mission to foster technology adoption and growth in humanitarian settings and make it universally accessible and useful.

Planned Goals and Milestones

The EngStarter implementation is planned such that the innovation will be completely developed and tested during Year 1 and scaled up in to increase impact in Year 2. Year 1 consists of the assembly and integration of each of the components of the system. Year 2 consists of an acceptability pilot and an accuracy validation trial. The final result will be an innovative system that may be immediately deployed across refugee camps, with a proven measure of refugee usability and local impact.
Funding Goal200,000
Projected Cumulative Lives Impacted250,000
New Implemented CountriesBrazil, Lebanon, South Sudan, Yemen
Recruit1 sales
New FeatureCreate application specific version for water management control and energy saving system.

The Team Behind the Innovation

Our team is comprised of a multidisciplinary and multicultural team with five passionate and motivated engineers, PhD and educators. By combining more than +10 years of experience in industry, academia and developing projects in refugee camps, we are qualified to bring better education quality to displaced communities. Jennifer DeBoer (co-founder) is research with years of experience in the field and research. Claudio (co-founder) brings strong technical knowledge from the industry.

EXECUTIVE TEAM INCLUDES WOMEN AND YOUTH

Milestone

Mar 2019
Recognition ReceivedPENDING
Feb 2019
New Product Or Service
Second Introductory Engineering Course in Kakuma Camp, Kenya
Jan 2019
New Product Or Service
Third Introductory Engineering Course in Azraq Camp, Jordan
Feb 2018
New Product Or Service
First Introductory Engineering Course in Kakuma Camp, Kenya
Jan 2018
New Product Or Service
Second Introductory Engineering Course in Azraq Camp, Jordan
Jan 2017
New Product Or Service
First Introductory Engineering Course in Azraq Camp, Jordan

Supporting Materials

EngStarter-An-Open-Hardware-and-IoT-Integrated-Education-Kit-for-Enabling-Community-Developed-Solutions-.pdf