Bored Panda works better on our iPhone app
Continue in app Continue in browser
BoredPanda Add Post

The Bored Panda iOS app is live! Fight boredom with iPhones and iPads here.

Teen Girls Invent Solar-Powered Tent For Homeless With No Engineering Experience, Win Grant From MIT
605points
User submission
39.5K
110K
Design, Social Issues5 years ago

This All-Girl Engineer Team Just Invented A Solar-Powered Tent For The Homeless

With rates of homelessness rapidly on the rise in Los Angeles, residents are scrambling to find solutions. One group of students at San Fernando High School took it upon themselves to make an impact, and despite having no prior experience with engineering or invention, they managed to construct a solar-powered tent that rolls up into a backpack, and now they’ve earned a whole lot more than just the world’s respect.

The young would-be builders were recruited by DIY Girls, a non-profit organization that empowers teenage girls from low-income families in LA to pursue the fields of technology and engineering. Evelyn Gomez, executive director of DIY Girls, oversaw the project and helped where she could, but it was solely undertaken by the 12-girl team from inception to completion. Aided by YouTube videos and Google searches, the ladies worked together over the course of a year to produce the tent through a mixture of sewing, coding, and 3D printing.

All of that hard work paid off in the end, as the girls won a $10,000 grant from the Lemelson-MIT program, and will present their invention at MIT’s EurekaFest on June 16th. Coming from low-income families themselves, the girls almost didn’t make the trip, but thanks to a GoFundMe campaign that saw them raise over $18k in donations, they’re well on their way. It’s a deserved victory for these young heroines who inspire hope in their community.

110Kviews

Share on Facebook
Popular on Bored Panda
Write comments
John L
Community Member
5 years ago

This is wonderful, but why doesn't the article explain more about what they are doing? I did a search, and there are now many companies making solar powered tents.

KK
Community Member
5 years ago

It is wonderful, and to people like CHRIS FELLOW HUMAN (who ovbiously isnt human, since humans have BRAINS) Let me explain it in the wonderful way EVERYONE ELSE sees this - This is a solar powered tent, it provides a small home for the homeless. Charities will use donated money to hand these out to the poor. Im not fully sure what the solar panels are for, but it is basically a tent. So Chris, THIS shows how uncaring YOU are for thinking giving a shelter to the poor is BAD

Load More Replies...
Brigitte
Community Member
5 years ago

I'm not sure I understand. Solar powered tents are nothing new. What are the solar panels for? Just light or do they provide outlets? But most importantly: Will the tents be free for the homeless? They sure won't have the money for it. This article and their GoFundMe page doesn't say anything about it. Based on these infos it's just a nice camping gimmick. (Which is still a great invention, well done girls.)

Helping Panda
Community Member
5 years ago

It's not a camping gimmick. It's part of a decades long effort to lure more girls into engineering and science fields. These girls didn't invent anything, they are playing around with things that are marginally related to engineering and technology so an MIT grant fund threw $10K at them in the hopes that some if it will stick and 1 or 2 of the dozen girls involved will end up becoming an engineer one day.

Load More Replies...
Дилян Еленов
Community Member
5 years ago

So for buying a cheap tent out your local hardware store , sticking some diy solar powered leds controlled via arduino you need an year and you get a grant from MIT on top of that ??? Btw : Picture 7 is fake , you can't handle solar panel like that . I am deeply ashamed both as an engineer and ngo activist .

Waxwork
Community Member
5 years ago

You've never been in a magazine photoshoot have you? They stage everything. The photographer most likely said here that looks interesting look like you're working with it. 2 seconds of googling determined the tent is also insulated includes USB ports in 2 sizes to charge phones and also has UV light sanitation to help the tent to keep it clean & free of smells. The phone charging is a major point as homeless peoples phone is often their only lifeline (and almost compulsory to find a job now a days) & it's often hard for them to find places to keep it charged. I could also be used to charge/run small usb type heaters/fans etc for added comfort.

Load More Replies...
Load More Comments
John L
Community Member
5 years ago

This is wonderful, but why doesn't the article explain more about what they are doing? I did a search, and there are now many companies making solar powered tents.

KK
Community Member
5 years ago

It is wonderful, and to people like CHRIS FELLOW HUMAN (who ovbiously isnt human, since humans have BRAINS) Let me explain it in the wonderful way EVERYONE ELSE sees this - This is a solar powered tent, it provides a small home for the homeless. Charities will use donated money to hand these out to the poor. Im not fully sure what the solar panels are for, but it is basically a tent. So Chris, THIS shows how uncaring YOU are for thinking giving a shelter to the poor is BAD

Load More Replies...
Brigitte
Community Member
5 years ago

I'm not sure I understand. Solar powered tents are nothing new. What are the solar panels for? Just light or do they provide outlets? But most importantly: Will the tents be free for the homeless? They sure won't have the money for it. This article and their GoFundMe page doesn't say anything about it. Based on these infos it's just a nice camping gimmick. (Which is still a great invention, well done girls.)

Helping Panda
Community Member
5 years ago

It's not a camping gimmick. It's part of a decades long effort to lure more girls into engineering and science fields. These girls didn't invent anything, they are playing around with things that are marginally related to engineering and technology so an MIT grant fund threw $10K at them in the hopes that some if it will stick and 1 or 2 of the dozen girls involved will end up becoming an engineer one day.

Load More Replies...
Дилян Еленов
Community Member
5 years ago

So for buying a cheap tent out your local hardware store , sticking some diy solar powered leds controlled via arduino you need an year and you get a grant from MIT on top of that ??? Btw : Picture 7 is fake , you can't handle solar panel like that . I am deeply ashamed both as an engineer and ngo activist .

Waxwork
Community Member
5 years ago

You've never been in a magazine photoshoot have you? They stage everything. The photographer most likely said here that looks interesting look like you're working with it. 2 seconds of googling determined the tent is also insulated includes USB ports in 2 sizes to charge phones and also has UV light sanitation to help the tent to keep it clean & free of smells. The phone charging is a major point as homeless peoples phone is often their only lifeline (and almost compulsory to find a job now a days) & it's often hard for them to find places to keep it charged. I could also be used to charge/run small usb type heaters/fans etc for added comfort.

Load More Replies...
Load More Comments
Popular on Bored Panda
Popular on Bored Panda
User Submissions
Also on Bored Panda
Also on Bored Panda