Developing Digital Literacy and Connecting Schools Globally

homeFounded in 2004 to bridge the educational divide between the United States and Kenya, Technology Partnership is a 501c3 non-profit that provides technology and training to develop digital literacy and build connections among students in both countries.

To date, we have shipped more than 500 donated computers to our 35 partner schools, and trained more than 180 teachers in the fundamentals of teaching with technology in Meru, Kenya.

Technology Partnership helps students in Kenya thrive in the technically-oriented global learning environment, economic marketplace and social networks. We also partner with complementary schools in Kenya and the United States to provide all students the access, motivation and modeling that foster digitally savvy global citizenship.


About Technology Partnership

Technology Partnership works to bridge the digital divide between Africa and the rest of the world by connecting schools and students in Kenya and the United States. By sharing technology resources, promoting digital literacy, and initiating social and cultural connections between Kenyan and American schools, we help all students and teachers become digitally-savvy global citizens who are connected to each other and the broader world.

Many African countries struggle to fully participate in the global marketplace due to a lack of information technology (IT) tools, access and skills. Kenya is well positioned to be a regional leader in the digital transition, but is currently ranked 90th in the world in networking readiness. Schools in Kenya have quality human resources but minimal digital infrastructure and know-how. If this digital divide is bridged, Kenyan youth, and Africans more broadly, will become connected, empowered and will thrive.

Technology Partnership’s goal of connecting self-sufficient and empowered learning communities across the globe through IT hardware, computer literacy and strong cross-cultural relationships is being met in multiple ways:

  • Since 2005, we have successfully shipped over 500 donated computers from Colorado to Kenya, and overseen the development of computer labs in 35 primary and secondary schools.
  • We have developed critical IT capacity within the Meru educational community by providing high-quality teacher training individually, and through a new partnership with Intel TEACH Kenya. Teachers who recently trained with Intel TEACH will in turn train the other teachers at their respective schools.
  • We are currently collaborating with 35 schools in Meru and 7 schools in Colorado. We are developing a model of authentic school-to-school cross-cultural academic exchange and material support.
  • We have identified the need for digital media connection capacity and responded by creating a digital media program in collaboration with a Colorado non-profit organization, Shoot Cameras Not Guns.
  • We are building a strong and diverse network of financial and material support through collaborations with generous individuals and institutions including DeVry University, CoBiz Financial, Jefferson County Public Schools and Boulder Valley School District.
  • We have initiated a comprehensive evaluation program to track our specific impacts, provide comprehensive program oversight and identify opportunities for improvement based on partner input.
  • We are developing a sustainability plan to position our organization for long-term success by ensuring that our activities and programs meet the highest ecological, social and economic standards.

Developing a Unique School-to-School Partnership Model

Technology Partnership is linking digital literacy with social networking and education between partner schools in United States and Kenya. Psychological research indicates that learning is most effectively a social experience. Learning with others provides the motivation, stimulus and social support necessary to take the risks inherent in trying new ways of learning and connecting. School-to-school links provide compelling learning opportunities for students on both sides of the partnership. These linkages also provide ongoing economic support for Kenyan schools and relationships that are responsive to changing economic and social conditions. We want our partner schools in Meru to be self-sufficient in managing their digital resources through technology response teams, supported through Kenya Methodist University. This will also include sustainable management of technology hardware at the end of its useful life.


photos: Darcy Varney



Partnerships are our strength. These major partners support our work in many ways. Thank you!


Kenya Methodist University

Intel TEACH program in Kenya

Boulder Valley School District

Shoot Cameras not Guns

Rotary International

Colorado Business Bank

Jefferson County Public Schools

HOPE Online Learning Academy

Cleo Parker Robinson Dance



Images from recent teacher-training sessions in Meru, Kenya, with TP directors

Click on an image to launch slideshow

2014 – Pictures by Adam Hurlburt


Previous years




Denver Post Article: Coloradans Donating Computers to Kenyan Children

Mile High News Article: Teacher Touts Tech Trends

DeVry University Annual Report

Summit Daily Article: Kenya: Beyond Safaris


Meet the Team

Dickson Mugendi David Ntwiga, Country Director, 

A native of Kenya, Dickson brings a long history of organizational entrepreneurship and an established human rights record to his role. As Country Director, Dickson accesses interest and capacity for compu

ters in schools and trains teachers using the most effective programs. He follows up with schools to continue meeting needs as they evolve and implements the administrative structure to ensure the continued success of T-P programs. As liaison he manages relationships between schools in the US and Meru.

Dickson is well known for community development and humanitarian work. He served as President of the Rotary Club in Meru and currently serves as Rotary Kenya Country Office Board and Assistant Governor for the district that includes Kenya, Ethiopia and South Sudan. He is the recipient of the Rotary Star President Award and the Women’s Human Rights Advocate Award for Africa. He is founder of Solidarity House Community Based Organization which helps women access start-up funds for income generating enterprises.

Dickson has a Masters degree in Human Rights from Mahidol University.

Diedre Paterno Pai, MPA, Executive Director Diedre brings her fifteen years of experience advancing the missions of nonprofits, to her role as Executive Director at T-P. Diedre identifies strategic priorities and works with her team to implement them. Diedre leads T-P’s fundraising, communications, public relations and partnerships.Diedre holds a Masters in Public Administration and NonProfit Management from the University of Colorado, Denver.

Andrew Wroblewski, Technical Director Based in Kenya, Andrew plays an important role in meeting the technology needs of the schools in Meru. Andrew works closely with the Country Director to identify issues, perform repairs and help things happen every day on the ground. Andrew is a member of the Rotary Club of Meru and lives the rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”

Andrew is also works for the Polaris Business Solutions as the Director of ICT and Publications. He holds a Masters degree from the Faculty of Law and Administration at the University of Gdansk, Poland.


Barbara Bates, PhD,  Founder For the past 19 years, Barb has been an educator, teaching in middle school, technical college, and since 1998, at DeVry University, Westminster, CO campus. Her passion is opening doors through education and expanding options to people looking for a better life. In 2004, this passion led her to Meru, Kenya, where she and her husband, Steve, started a project to ship used computers from Colorado to schools in Meru and provide technology training to teachers at those schools so they could help develop computer literacy in the region. Her overarching goal is to open the doors for Kenya to connect to the world’s education, economic and political discourse and opportunities. Until all people can join in the markets, the conversations, and the learning with our global community, we all suffer the absence of their voices and ideas.

Barb’s expertise is in the area of faculty development, online education and development, and 21st century teaching and learning. Her Master’s degree from the University of Colorado is in Educational Psychology and her PhD, also from CU, is in Educational Leadership and Innovation.

Steve Bates, MBA, has been a member and supporter of Technology Partnership since the first trip

to Kenya for exploring the needs of educators in Meru, in 2004. Steve’s professional career has been in Human Services with the State of Colorado, during which time he served as Director of the Division of Youth Corrections and the Director of the Office of Children, Youth, and Family Services for the State of Colorado. Steve is currently the Director of the Denver Family Crisis Center for the Denver Department of Human services. Steve’s work responsibilities included managing yearly budgets of $5 – $600 million. Steve’s educational background includes a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin and an MBA from Keller graduate school of management.

BrandonBrandon Berman joined the Technology Partnership board in 2011. He lead a group of eight to Meru, Kenya in July 2011 under the project name “From Their Perspective”. The group donated twenty small video cameras and two laptops and worked with schools to create connections with schools in the US. The group also taught first aid and video production and the trip was documented with video and photography. He plans to return to Meru in July of 2013 with Barbara Bates and others to continue the educational mission. Brandon is an instructor and director of the Multimedia Graphic Design program at Front Range Community College. Brandon is a New Media Designer and an Educator/Trainer with a background in human services. He is creative and adept at integrating multimedia into education. He has been consulting on video production, Web development and design, podcasting, software usability, implementation, and training since 1997 and owned a video and web design company from 2001-2007. Brandon has been teaching video editing and animation courses for the past 12 years. He has been with Front Range Community College for 7 years and was the 2007 Master Teacher and received the 2008 Outstanding Faculty Award. He has also taught at Colorado Free University, Red Rocks Community College, University of Colorado, Boulder and at primary, secondary and universities in several towns in Kenya. Brandon is excited to be part of Technology Partnership and has made many friends in Kenya and the US.

DVK_7710Joanie Calhoun is committed to making education and computer training available to students and teachers in Kenya. Joanie has been to Kenya 7 times and has been involved in partnerships with several schools, which involved providing textbooks for every student in Form 1,2,3, and 4 in one Secondary School, providing Training for Teachers, shipping computers to Kenya three times with Barbara Bates, shipping elementary library books from Wyoming schools to an elementary school in Meru, providing Home Science supplies for Std.7 and 8 students and personally sponsoring students in KeMU, Meru Institute of Technology, Kenyatta University, Meru University of Science and Technology, Nairobi Catering Training Program, and numerous Secondary Schools in the Meru area. Joanie is on the board of Kenya Methodist University Development Association, a 501C-3 based in Richland Washington,, which raises funds for scholarships for students at KeMU. Joanie is also an Ambassador for The Center For The Church and Global Aids, based in Denver, whose focus is education about prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS, elimination of stigma against persons with HIV/AIDS and providing grants for HIV/AIDS project in Kenya, India, Denver, and other places around the world. Joanie served as the Mission Coordinator of the Rocky Mountain Conference of the United Methodist Church for 12 years and is currently the liaison for missionaries related to our conference churches. Joanie is the Mission chairperson of Erie United Church and is married to Jim Calhoun, Pastor of Erie UMC.

Tim Rutherford was a valuable resource to Technology partnership long before becoming a board member. His participation began as a technology student at DeVry, providing technical support for the 2011 trip. This involved creating the installation media and traveling to Kenya to perform the installs and troubleshooting at all of the schools. All technical needs, from the website to software installs in Kenya, are passed through Tim to help our organization stay up to date and efficient.
DVK_7685 DVK_7704 DVK_7693
Cliff Deffke, Ralph Ogden, Stephen Parce

Advisory Board

George Awuor, PhD, is a policy analyst at The Bell Policy Center- a non-profit research and advocacy group based in Denver, Colorado. He focuses on fiscal reform and how public policy affects working poor families in Colorado. George has international research experience working on poverty issues. He holds a Ph.D. in design and planning from the University of Colorado at Denver.

Amber DeBerry

photos: & Darcy Varney


Get Involved

Ways to Support Technology Partnership:

    1. Make a tax-deductible cash donation
      With your assistance we will be able to meet our major funding priorities for this year
    2. Make a tax-deductible in-kind donation
      We are always looking for in-kind donations of additional IT hardware and other supplies.
    3. Volunteer

Read a Message from Technology Partnership Founder and US Director Barbara Bates, PhD


photo: Darcy Varney



Diedre Paterno Pai

Executive Director


Barb Bates, PhD

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