One of the most exciting parts of Science House Foundation’s collaboration with LNBio, Brazil’s national biosciences laboratory, in the city of Campinas, has been the placement of a new MicroGlobalScope grant at a local Non-Governmental Organization called Anhumas/Quero-Quero. MicroGlobalScope is a Science House Foundation program that provides complete microscopy kits to science teachers who work with 10-12 year old students and then connects them through a collaborative website.
When Dr. Ana Carolina Zeri, a biochemist and physicist who runs one of the multi-user laboratories at LNBio, first contacted Science House Foundation about collaborating, she said she had in mind the perfect place for a MicroGlobalScope grant — an NGO that has been providing education to children from a local favela (a Brazilian slum). Anhumas/Quero-Quero works with children of the favelas whose daily life is spent in destitute poverty amongst gangs, drug dealers and widespread childhood pregnancy.
In addition to providing the grant, Ana established a relationship with Anhumas/Quero-Quero and now volunteers a few hours per week to teach the children the basics of microscopy. The most striking facet of her role there has been its unexpected results: within a few short weeks Ana sparked the kids’ interest in science, which in turn served as a catalyst for literacy because the kids wanted to share their scientific discoveries and describe, on Science House Foundation’s MicroGlobalScope website, the stories of their findings.
Science House Foundation asked Brazilian documentarian André Blas to help us tell this remarkable story of science becoming a gateway for literacy.
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