In many rural communities, it can be difficult to find space to meet or work on projects. In order to better meet the needs of the community, the West Sedona Makerspace was formed. The goal was to make an area accessible to any community member to use for projects, meetings, and professional or community development initiatives. With help from RAIN funding, the group was able to build the West Sedona Makerspace with tools such as a LegoWall, Robotics, Computer Hardware, 3D Printers, and more.
One group that has benefitted from access to the Makerspace is the local Boy Scout Troop, who utilized the space to construct a 48 foot track with 200 racers. The group met weekly in order to build the track and racers. Over 135 children were impacted in this project, coming away with a better understanding of STEM and specifically math and engineering.
On average, the participants were between the ages of 8 -13 years old and most of them said this was one of their first STEM events this year. Forming a space and partnerships in this fashion allow for amazing opportunities for the community to collaborate and grow.
The Arizona Rural Activation and Innovation Network (RAIN) is funded by the National Science Foundation to oversee grant funding for informal STEM education projects in four rural Arizona communities: Cochise County, Graham and Greenlee County, the Verde Valley, and the Navapache/White Mountains region. RAIN acts as a resource for best practices in informal STEM program development and works to highlight effective STEM programs, employers and organizations across the state of Arizona. Interested in applying for a grant? Visit our website today and learn more about the opportunities in your community.