Sustainable Development Goals Summit in New York

Emmie and Charlotte

Two teenagers from Guildford have travelled to speak at the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Summit in New York as part of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly.

Emmie Dowling and Charlotte Smith, from Tormead School, Guildford, were chosen to represent their school following a hackathon set up by iamtheCODE - the first African-led global movement to mobilise government, private sector, and investors to advance STEAMED (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, Entrepreneurship and Design) Education.

Emmie & Charlotte spoke at the summit

The girls were selected following their development of a solution called "teach-it" at the hackathon in June - a web platform that would educate teachers worldwide on a solution created in response to the UN's Sustainable Development Goal of accessing quality education.

SDGs Hackathons are a Code-a-Thon where developers, designers, hackers, students, entrepreneurs and educators gather to collaborate on projects including applications, software, hardware, data visualisation and platform solutions.

Emmie and Charlotte spoke at the summit on SDGs and the "teach-it" website, incorporating the Kakuma Girls – girls from a refugee camp in Kenya who have been inspired to code through iamtheCODE's work.

Emmie said: "We are very fortunate to be going to school in Guildford and benefiting largely with the education that we have. We realise that the case is not the same with many girls our age around the world, which is why we believe so strongly in this cause. We have been given an opportunity to help make a difference and raise awareness of the quality of education for girls around the world and we're incredibly proud to have be chosen."

Kakuma Girls

Education for girls around the world

Mrs Samantha Jones (Assistant Head: Adventure and Service, Tormead School) said: "We were delighted that the girls represented iamtheCODE in New York. This unique and transformative opportunity allowed them to express the school's concern for the education of girls throughout the world. They have developed a strong sense of their role as global citizens which they will carry with them throughout life. The school's partnership with iamtheCODE continues to bring benefits to our students, and more importantly the communities of Besisahar in Nepal and the Kakuma Refugee Camp in northern Kenya."

The girls were sponsored by local flooring company Eaton Square and Novatio Consulting to raise the £1,500 for accommodation and travel costs to attend the summit.

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