Zoom Announces EdInnovation Award Recipients
Six Education-Focused Nonprofits Around the Globe to Receive EdInnovation Award, Grant Support from Zoom
Zoom Video Communications, Inc., today announced the recipients of its EdInnovation Awards.
Six recipients––Cambiar Education, Center for Black Educator Development, Kabakoo Academies, Open Up Resources, Re:Coded, and STEM From Dance––will each receive a grant to support their work, which addresses the education challenges of today through initiatives including diversifying the teaching profession, entrepreneurial job training, assisting aspiring youth in conflict-affected areas to join the digital economy, and providing access to science-based approaches to reading education. These organizations help improve student, teacher, and community outcomes for the most underserved and will receive Zoom technology, volunteer support, and funding to help them scale. The total amount of grant funding is $1 million from Zoom Cares, Zoom’s philanthropic organization.
“We recognize the resilience and tenacity of these six organizations,” said Roxana Shirkhoda, Head of Social Impact at Zoom. “They turned an unprecedented challenge into an opportunity, scaling their reach and deepening their impact via video communications. We are thrilled that for several of these organizations, Zoom Cares will be their first corporate funding partner. We look forward to supporting all six groups and their critical education efforts around the world.”
Education continues to be deeply impacted by the pandemic, and Zoom is invested in supporting students and educators in the long-term. In addition to providing free Zoom access to more than 125,000 K-12 schools as defined by approved domains, Zoom Cares has also provided grant funding to organizations including Education Superhighway, Profound Gentleman, and Teach for All.
What Our Community Leaders Are Saying:
“Our Master Innovators program engages students as leaders to reimagine education and to address complex social and economic challenges in their local communities,” said Christina Heitz, Founder & CEO of Cambiar Education. “We are honored to receive a Zoom Innovation award. With it, we plan to grow Master Innovators into a global youth corps of change agents—leaders, creators, and problem solvers—who are prepared to lead transformational change in their schools, communities, and beyond.”
“We are grateful and excited that this Zoom EdInnovation grant award will enable us to expand our virtual Freedom Schools Literacy Academy program which provides a culturally-responsive, affirming and sustaining early literacy curriculum for 1st-3rd grade scholars, while Black high school and college teacher apprentices develop a foundational educational philosophy that is grounded in creating the most ideal social, cultural, and academic environment for Black children,” said Sharif El-Mekki, Founder & CEO of Center for Black Educator Development. “We believe that if these experiences are accessible and scaled to reach more children and aspiring educators of color in America, as made possible by utilizing a virtual platform, like Zoom, we will increase the number of Black teachers in the country and the promise of what a teacher corps that reflects its students holds for closing achievement and opportunity gaps.”
“We are building the first pan-African learning platform for digital and small-scale manufacturing by leveraging cutting-edge tech and community-embedded knowledge,” said Yanick Kemayou, Founder of Kabakoo Academies. “The Zoom EdInnovation Award is a tremendous opportunity to scale up our impact and upgrade the Kabakoo Learning Experience. Zoom support will be key to improve both our video-based learning platform and the deployment of our training offerings to young Africans.”
“Education is the single most effective strategy our country has for disrupting generational poverty, and yet pre-COVID only 35% of 4th graders were proficient in reading. There is a staggering correlation between the inability to read by 4th grade and adult incarceration rates,” said Jessica Sliwerski, CEO of Open Up Resources. “Schools and districts can take years to implement new curriculum, but kids can’t wait. That’s why we’re proud to partner with Zoom to bring science-backed, personalized reading instruction to children in the Oakland area this summer 2021. As a nonprofit, we couldn’t do something like this without Zoom’s technology and support. This work has potential to be a catalyst for meaningful change in the lives of these families.”
“Many of our graduates are hired by leading companies and startups, enabling them to double their incomes, write code and spur innovation across all industries,” said Alexandra Clare, CEO and Co-Founder of Re:Coded. “This partnership with Zoom will enable us to scale our market driven education model, reach new students across borders and open the doors to the digital economy for youth, regardless of their gender, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, or geography.”
“STEM From Dance envisions a world where underrepresented minority girls are creative, confident, and equipped to be leaders and innovators in the STEM fields––all through the creative and confidence-building aspects of dance,” said Yamilée Toussaint Beach, Founder & CEO of STEM From Dance. “We are thrilled about the opportunity to partner with Zoom to increase the number of girls we reach and equip them as our next generation of innovators, scientists, and techies.”