STAMFORD, Conn. (November 7, 2019) — Hoping to inspire a new generation of scientists and engineers, United Way of Western Connecticut conducted its first STEM Fair in Stamford on Wednesday, October 30, 2019.
More than 250 children in kindergarten through grade five engaged in hands-on science activities. The event was conducted at the After School program operated by the Boys & Girls Club of Stamford at the Yerwood Center.
The STEM activities were designed and conducted by 50 volunteers from 10 corporations and local nonprofit organizations. Activities ranged from rocket blasts and spaghetti towers to baking soda balloon explosions and slime making. The students’ faces lit up with wonder and excitement, while the corporate volunteers got to take a break from their daily routine to spend a day showing elementary school students just how fun science can be.
After participating in interactive science activities, the students were able to choose free books from a truck donated by UPS. The books were donated from corporations to support reading at home—a project United Way calls Wannaread Academy.
STEM projects were hosted by Deloitte, the EverWonder Museum, Genworth, Legg Mason, the Microsoft Store, Nestlé Waters, Northern Trust, Purdue Pharma, and Sound Waters.
“This was corporate volunteerism at its best,” said Isabel Almeida, Interim President and Chief Operating Officer of United Way of Western Connecticut. “The kids’ excitement was infectious—they really got to experience how fun learning can be. And the volunteers had a fantastic time doing something that’s out of the ordinary for them. Everybody wins.”
Maribel Sandalo, Yerwood Unit Director for the Boys & Girls Club of Stamford, echoed the sentiment that the kids found the activities as enjoyable as they were educational. “The children had a fantastic time exploring different STEM projects while being creative and learning,” she said
This is the second STEM Fair United Way of Western Connecticut has coordinated this year. The first was in Danbury on June 5, with 10 organizations providing STEM activities to children at Danbury’s South Street School and Rogers Park Middle School.
Launched in 2008, United Way’s Day of Action is an annual event that mobilizes thousands of volunteers to make a meaningful impact in more than 400 communities around the world.
Captions for available images follow with thumbnails. High-resolution images are available for download at https://flic.kr/s/aHsmJ6n5gJ