Sewa ASPIRE: Lego Drive

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The Sewa Houston Summer 2016 interns

HOUSTON: Sewa International held a LEGO Drive at the Texas Robotics Invitational on Saturday, June 25, held at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory High School. Abhishek Routray, a mechanical engineering student at U.T. Austin and Sewa intern, set up a booth at the robotics competition to collect LEGO toys for the children Sewa works with. Routray was able to collect several thousand pieces worth of LEGOs that ranged from full sets to spare parts.

The toys collected will be used to introduce the refugee and immigrant children that Sewa works with to robotics and coding concepts. The Sewa interns have dedicated their summer to planning and executing an interactive and educative math and science curriculum. The lesson plans include experiments the children can assemble in class, competitions, and videos.

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An Aspire Students at San Marcos ASPIRE center, learning all about growing plants

As one of the summer curriculum coordinators, Routray decided that using LEGOs in class would be an ingenious way of awakening an interest in science, “Based off of the science experiments we have already done, I know they will really enjoy all the activities we have planned for them; and I can’t wait to see what their imaginations make of the LEGO sets.”

Besides implementing a new STEM curriculum at Sewa, the interns are also helping the children improve their English speaking skills, and creating a mentorship program for them. The mentors are immigrant and refugee professionals who talk to the kids about their experiences upon their arrival to the U.S. and how they have succeeded.

ASPIRE tutorials is Sewa International’s flagship afterschool program that runs in Los Arcos and San Marcos apartments in South West Houston. The program is supported by the Harris county department of education,State Fram Neighbourhood Assist Grant, San Marcos owners,Subhash Sreeram and Shonali Majumdar, Brays Oaks Management District director Richard Rodriguez and Council Man Larry Green of District K.

Sewa Houston is one of thirty-eight Sewa branches located within the United States. For over ten years Sewa Houston has been part of a larger international movement which aims to serve humanity irrespective of religion, gender or nationality. Sewa Houston aims to help those most disadvantaged within its local community with programs focused on refugee empowerment, public health outreach, and improving the education of immigrant and refugee students. Sewa is dedicated to the ideal of “Service above Self”.

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