BrainBasket Foundation, a Ukrainian NGO dedicated to IT education, has announced that George Soros has offered its support to its Technology Nation program.
“Mr Soros is supporting the program personally through the International Renaissance Foundation,” BrainBasket’s PR manager Andrii Petrunia told Ukraine Digital News. This foundation was created by the US billionnaire and philanthropist as early as 1990 to support the democratic transition in Ukraine.
“Mr Soros’s support will go to re-equiping the libraries of our learning hubs with computers, projectors, boards, Internet access, etc. It will also help cover mentors’ salary in the form of a bonus for graduating a group,” Petrunia explained, without, however, being able to disclose the amount of Soros’s support.
The BrainBasket Foundation also expects to open more hubs and train more groups in each hub.
“Moreover, thanks to Mr Soros, the educational program will be modernized and expanded with a ‘data modeling’ approach. Graduates of these courses will be able to work in the rapidly-growing field of Big Data in both the public and private sectors,” Petrunia added.
Launched in March 2016, Technology Nation is a free program that combines courses on programming from leading international technology universities, including Harvard and the MIT, with practical exercises led by experienced mentors. It aims to attract 3,000 participants from more than 20 Ukrainian cities, in partnership with local IT communities and city authorities.
“George Soros’s contribution to the development of an open and developed society in Ukraine today is difficult to overestimate,” stated Vladimir Liulka, director of the BrainBasket Foundation.
“He has a clear vision of the importance of developing IT education, which shows his understanding of the important role of the IT sector in Ukraine’s economy,” Liulka added.
Last year Soros launched the Ukrainian Redevelopment Fund, a private investment vehicle whose first investment went to Ciklum. This major software engineering company is also a sponsor of the BrainBasket Foundation.