MONDAY, 14 AUG 2023: PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO – The Digicel Foundation announced its Technology In Education (TIE) Centre Programme in partnership with Pan Trinbago on World Steelpan Day, 11 August 2023. This year the Foundation’s TIE Programme will follow a ‘panyard model’, opening eight technology centres attached to panyards around the country through an investment of TT$540,000.
The first four recipients of these TIE Centres were nominated by Pan Trinbago President Beverley Ramsey-Moore and the Central Executive, and they are Katzenjammers Steel Orchestra in Tobago, Curepe Scherzando Steel Orchestra; NGC Couva Joylanders Steel Orchestra and Harlem Syncopators Steel Orchestra.
In addition, the Digicel Foundation issued a call to all registered steelband organisations to apply for one of four available grants to transform their panyards with a Technology in Education (TIE) Centre. To apply, the organisation must show evidence that they have a designated space large enough to host a computer lab and that they already offer after-school youth or community training initiatives. Most importantly, it should be clear that the organisation has a sustainable plan for growing its outreach and that the proposed TIE Centre will have an impact on a significant number of people.
The idea for the panyard model was born out of the Digicel Foundation’s successful partnership with the Tobago Panthers Steel Orchestra, which opened a TIE Centre last year. The Tobago Panthers Pan Theatre TIE Centre offers a homework centre and a number of after-school programmes for approximately 30 children visiting the centre daily. Mr Brian Thomas, General Manager of the Tobago Panthers Pan Theatre, testifies that the centre has transformed the prospects of youth in at-risk situations by increasing access to resources and support programmes.
President of Pan Trinbago Mrs. Beverly Ramsey Moore said, “We are looking forward to this partnership with the Digicel Foundation, with no doubt of its success. Our spaces will not just be a pan space with a computer room, but Centres of Excellence. Our pan spaces already have an influx of youth on a nightly basis, and now we will have an avenue to propel them.”
The deadline for applications from registered steelbands is August 31, 2023. Successful applicants will have 6 to 8 weeks to implement the project. The application form is available online at https://forms.office.com/r/LgYSfKWYAB.