For our latest post on Charitable Choices, we chatted with Dr. Eugenia Duodu who is the CEO of Visions of Science Network for Learning (VoSNL). The organization looks to provide youth from low-income communities meaningful engagement in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
You can catch her speaking at TedxToronto on October 26, 2018 at the Evergreen Brickworks!
Describe your charity/non-profit in a few sentences.
Visions of Science exists to empower youth from low-income communities through meaningful engagement in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). We do this by providing free and consistent programming to youth directly within their communities.
What problem does it aim to solve?
The importance of early and ongoing exposure to STEM learning is well documented. However, youth from low-income communities experience multiple barriers to meaningful engagement and are therefore underrepresented in STEM fields. We serve to intentionally support youth from low-income communities by closing this opportunity gap and provide accessible programming. We know that this support will have favourable outcomes in their educational achievements, career aspirations and overall well-being of youth.
When did you start/join it?
I started volunteering with the organization in 2011 and assumed the role of part-time, volunteer executive director. In 2015 I assumed my full-time role as CEO.
What made you want to get involved?
I was drawn to the organization from the desire to get involved with a STEM-based organization that focused on working with youth communities like the one I grew up in. I really wanted to make an impact in my community and be part of creating opportunities that really changed my life. I work with an incredible team of individuals who are all passionate about creating positive change in our communities.
What was the situation like when you started?
Youth from low-income communities did not have access to STEM learning opportunities outside of the classroom.
How has it changed since?
We are currently engaging over 500 youth from 24 communities across the Greater Toronto Area and we are growing.
What more needs to be done?
There are so many more communities that are in desperate need of the programming that we provide. More work needs to be done in replicating these types of meaningful opportunities in more communities.
How can our readers help?
You can support Visions of Science by making a donation at www.vosnl.org/donate
Do you have any events coming up?
I will be speaking at TedxToronto on October 26, 2018 at the Evergreen Brickworks!
We will be having our 4th annual fundraising gala on March 29, 2019 at the Daniels Spectrum in Toronto tickets will be available on our website in December.
Where can we follow you?
You can learn more about our organization at our website: www.vosnl.org. The best way to keep up with us is to follow us on social media.