STEAM:Coders, a Pasadena-based nonprofit organization that gives underserved students an opportunity to enhance their skills regarding computers, coding and the internet, is in desperate need of laptops and Chromebooks for children in grades K-12.
“These laptops are for children whose families live below the poverty line,” said Raymond Ealy, executive director of STEAM:Coders. “We have hundreds of kids in our program, and 90% of them receive free or reduced-priced meals.”
Ealy is hoping a donor or group of donors might deliver the “magic number” for donations — $20,000 — this holiday season. That total would provide 20 laptops, 20 Chromebooks, internet access and mobile hot spots, which have become even more critical as the students “experience the challenges associated with remote learning,” he said. “A primary need for our students and their families is they can’t even get on the internet when they’re not at school. Internet access and mobile hot spots are a primary need for our families.
“An investment in their futures will provide them with much-needed resources: computer equipment, internet access, hot spots and instruction. A lot of these families are vulnerable; they deal with food insecurity. We want to keep these kids engaged. [Through STEAM:coders] they get exposed to things that they didn’t even know existed; for instance, they didn’t know robotics was accessible.”
Some of the students’ special experiences occur through partnerships with Pasadena City College and ArtCenter College of Design.
“Of the kids that we are serving, 80-85% had never set foot on a college campus,” said Ealy, who noted that elementary students are placed in a class that offers an introduction to coding and also learn to design websites. “We get excellent feedback from their parents.”
For more information or to make a donation, email email@example.com or visit steamcoders.org.