Pedro has been an IT consultant since 2012 at ALTEN Belgium and works as an IT Manager at BNP Paribas Fortis. In 2015 he participated in his first charitable mission in a school in Malawi. He returned there in 2017 with the help of ALTEN Belgium and BNP Paribas Fortis. As a result of these successes, he decided to create his own charity to develop IT competences in schools in developing countries: Worldwide Solidarity for Education.
The creation of WSE
In 2015 Pedro participated in his first mission in a Malawi school with the charity Exchange. The goal of this mission was to train the teachers of the Likuni Girls School in IT, especially with Excel. He also trained the administration to digitize all the school’s processes —invoices, students’ files etc.
When he came back to Belgium, Pedro continued working on this project and accordingly developed a bespoke database for the Likuni School. He received help from BNP Paribas Fortis, which donated 25 laptops, and ALTEN Belgium, which paid for the shipping. Thanks to this support, Pedro returned to Malawi in 2017 to install the 25 laptops and the database.
As a result of this intervention, the life at Likuni Girl School has completely changed! The students used to study in groups of 5 or 6 in front of a computer dating from the 1980s. They can now have proper IT sessions with better performing computers. The teachers, who consequently received a better IT training thanks to Pedro, can share their knowledge and secure a better professional future for their students. This mission also impacted the daily life of the school, which became an IT exam center for other schools. The database also facilitates everyday tasks like filling the students’ files or managing accountancy.
When he came back from this second mission, Pedro realized he wanted to go further. He wanted to help other schools in developing countries work on their IT competences. That’s why he decided in 2017 —with two other people— to found WSE, which is sponsored by ALTEN Belgium.
What is Worldwide Solidarity for Education?
This non-lucrative charity has a simple yet complex idea. To reduce the increasing digital gap at schools which is currently penalizing developing countries. To achieve this goal, the charity works with motivated schools and provides a technology kit, designed to develop IT skills of students and improve daily management.
This technology kit includes:
- 5 Raspberry computers
- Access to the database
- 5 mouse and keyboards
- 5 LCD screens
- 4 solar panels
Of course, a member of WSE always goes out in the field to make sure that everything goes smoothly and to train teachers on how to use it.
The actions set in place
In 2018, with the help of their sponsors, including ALTEN Belgium, and some crowdfunding, the charity worked on a new mission, in the Likuni Boy School in Malawi.
For this mission, our consultant Pedro found a partner to add solar panels to the kit in order to make it energy self-sufficient. He will go to Malawi soon to train the teachers and install everything. And don’t worry, we will follow-up this great story!