Equipping kids for online school

Help us provide Romanian disadvantaged children with tablets & laptops so that they don’t miss out on essential education now that the schools are closed.

MEET HANNA

Hanna is 12 years old and lives in a one-bedroom apartment with her mother and grandmother. Her mother is a single mom and works double shifts to cover the family’s basic expenses. Her grandmother receives a minimum pension, and is constantly rushing in and out of hospitals due to various chronic health problems.

Hanna has not been to school since March. She has not been allowed to meet friends for over six months, and has gradually developed symptoms of anxiety. Hanna has always been a stop student, but now she struggles to keep up. She attends her daily classes on an old tablet with a broken screen. The sound and the microphone work only occasionally, so it’s difficult for her to participate fully in the online lessons. Still, she considers herself lucky. Many of her schoolmates only have their parents’ smartphones, or nothing at all.

(Hanna’s is a fictional name, but this is a true story).

lonley-child

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected us all, but some have been affected more than others. In Romania, the schools have been closed since March, when a national lockdown was first introduced, and they did not reopen again until after the summer holidays.

Even when the schools were reopened in September, many children were still unable to attend, either because they are living with older, more vulnerable family members, or because they themselves are in the high-risk group.

In Romania, it is quite common for families of several generations to live together in the same household, something that makes it more difficult to protect the vulnerable groups.

The children who still could not attend school even when the schools reopened, have been dependent on online classes ever since March, and it is uncertain how much longer this will last.

Being unable to attend school is detrimental to children’s development regardless of the circumstances, both in terms of socialisation, mental health, and the increased risk of domestic violence. All of this affects children’s learning and development.

If the Romanian state provided the basis for online learning, at the very least by offering computers or tablets, and good internet access for all, then the need would would not be so acute. Unfortunately, this is not the case.

We are currently deep into the second wave of Covid-19 infections, and the schools are closed again. Many children struggle with learning, not only because of stress, mental health and lack of good follow-up, but also because they lack the basic equipment that they need in order to participate in the online classes. As months go by with no action being taken, our concern is increasing, and we decided to take this into our own hands. Something must be done, and it must be done urgently.

WHO ARE WE?

We are a group of idealists, creatives and professionals from different countries who live in Romania, and together we have started an organisation called Polylogos. Polylogos is an independent civil society organisation, based in Cluj, Romania, with a focus on building inclusive communities, strengthening democracy and human rights, and enhancing civic engagement. The idea behind Polylogos emerged through many long discussions over endless amounts of coffee, beautiful mountain hikes, and long roadtrips with good friends. The organisation was officially established in March 2020. We already have a lot of activity here in the local community – you can read more about it here.

polylogos core team

As an organisation, we are committed to integrity and transparency in everything we do. All the money we receive will go to the purchase and distribution of computers and tablets to children from disadvantaged families, who don’t have what they need to fully participate in online schooling. We will always strive to ensure a high degree of transparency in how the money is being used.

Since Polylogos is not primarily a charity organisation, we will work closely with other local organisations here in Cluj to make sure that the computers and tablets will go to those who need it most. Everyone who contributes with a gift will have the opportunity to receive regular updates on what the money goes to and who benefits from it.

We hope to start distributing tablets and computers throughout the month of December, although realistically the purchasing and distributing will happen closer to Christmas. Our aim is to make sure that the children are better equipped when school starts again in the new year.

We estimate that a used laptop or tablet will cost between 350-400 Euros (400-480 USD / 1700-2000 RON), including all the necessary software, such as Microsoft Windows and Office. While attempting to mobilise support from our communities internationally, we are also working locally to reach out to companies and individuals who may be willing to sponsor us with affordable products, better discounts and financial support.

There are also ways for you to sponsor this project with practical non-monetary gifts, such as tablets, computers or smartphones that you no longer need, as long as this equipment is not broken or faulty in any way. If you want to give a non-monetary gift, please contact us by phone/WhatsApp: +40 753 23 9313 or e-mail: camilla@polylogos.eu.

We hope to provide computers or tablets for at least 50 school children, to aid them in their online learning. It’s a small start, but it will mean a world of difference for those we help.

We offer you this opportunity to give a different Christmas gift this year, and help a kid get a good education, even through this pandemic. From the bottom of our hearts: Thank you!

thank you

How You Can Help

Donate

Norway

Bidra.no

Romania

LEI: RO25BTRLRONCRT0539270901 EUR: RO72BTRLEURCRT0539270901

International

Paypal.me/polylogos

Spread the Word

Please help us reach more people and raise more funds by sharing this project with your friends and family, and in your wider network on social media. Together, we can do so much more!