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Build: Not Impossible

Empowering youth to discover breakthrough solutions rooted in the needs of their own communities.

Run time: 3:59

Build: Not Impossible is an education endeavor that empowers youth to become leaders in creative thinking, innovation, and problem solving within their communities and beyond.

The Build: Not Impossible model uses mobile maker spaces to offer under-served youth greater opportunity for education and skills through creative, project-based learning. By creating safe spaces where imaginations and minds can flourish, Build: Not Impossible empowers youth to discover breakthrough solutions rooted in the needs of their own communities.

The Absurdity

In 2017, 262 million (or 1 out of every 5) children, adolescents and youth were out of school. This includes 64 million children of primary school age, 61 million adolescents of lower secondary school age, and 138 million youth of upper secondary school age.
(Source: UNESCO Institute for Statistics)

The Goal

To provide youths in refugee camp access to STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) education.

The Solution

Through Build: Not Impossible, students are introduced to hard and soft skills embedded in each activity including: soldering, building circuit boards, measuring, irrigating, sketching, sawing, hammering drilling, conducting research and applying elements of algebra, critical thinking, teamwork, and communication.

Curriculum:  Build: Not Impossible's library of modular curriculum includes a variety of STEAM-based learning themes and innovation activity challenges.   

Connectivity:  Through digital communication tools, Build: Not Impossible students around the world communicate and collaborate on projects and solving problems. 

Community:  Guided by human-centered inquiry and learning, Build: Not Impossible focuses on developing practical skills applicable to the everyday lives of students using readily accessible materials and tools.

The Build: Network is a global hub for makers, educators and youth who support each other in discovering and creating local innovations. The program provides cross-cultural connectivity that positions our youngest generations to lead the world into the future by encouraging global empathy, tact, and understanding in their weekly assignments.

Local educators undergo a Build: Not Impossible teacher training certification to acquire valuable skills that can increase their employment value and student retention. This ultimately builds teacher confidence around new concepts and innovative approaches to education.

Yida Resettlement Camp is one of the harshest, most isolated places in the world. It has been home to more than 60,000 refugees escaping an ongoing conflict that has persisted in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan since 2011. Because Yida is not officially recognized as a refugee camp, it relies on an informal, community-run education program.

In 2017, we deployed a Build: Not Impossible pilot program that included a 100% solar-powered mobile maker space where students explored themes including structural engineering, agriculture, motion and electricity. In the program, students primarily relied on locally-sourced materials and tools to make local innovations related to each theme, such as water-efficient hand-washing systems and personal solar-powered lamps.