Seventeen-year-old Nadine Maselle was last year selected as one of three South African youth fellows of the Facebook Community Leadership Programme, a global initiative investing in people who are helping their communities using Facebook platforms.
She received a $50 000 (about R700 000) grant from Facebook to be used for her community initiative, ‘Salt River High Tutoring’.
Nadine was successfully nominated by the Dream Factory Foundation for the fellowship and decided to build a computer lab for pupils.
The Dream Lab, the first of its kind, is a creative and inspirational space where the pupils will ignite, develop and achieve their dreams through learning themes and tools such as coding, robotics, programming, virtual reality and computer engineering.
“We donated 20 computers, and these will help mostly with teaching basic computer skills, CV writing and applications to universities. This I believe will increase the pass rate at the school,” Nadine told the Cape Argus.
“We chose to donate the computer lab because most of the pupils in Salt River High do not know basic computer skills,” she added.
Born in Thohoyandou, Vhufuli, and raised by her grandmother, Nadine moved to Cape Town when she started high school.
She is currently studying electrical engineering at Northlink College, and tutors 20-plus learners from her school in mathematics, science and computers.
She also spearheaded a gardening and recycling project with her school’s palie.
She is entirely self-taught, and using the grant she was awarded via FCLP has opened new doors for her peers.
Salt River High principal, Fairuz Patel, said the lab would help facilitate teaching and learning.
“The school is extremely excited and proud of her. This was her dream and it is surreal to see it coming to fruition,” she said.
“The energy she shows as she balances her tutoring work with her own studies is inspirational.”