Superheroes are among us every day. Ava Roberts, a 10-year-old schoolgirl with cerebral palsy from Salford in Manchester, UK, starred in an episode of an animated series from Tech We Can and Tech She Can, a charity endeavoring to bring more women into the STEM workforce. Their objective is to empower and educate girls and women to pursue careers in STEM.
Ava participated in the organization’s animated lessons, shorts geared toward primary school children to encourage them to “think and talk about technology and the role it plays in their lives.” These videos address various technology topics, such as AI, drones, and robotics, and are shown to primary school kids across the UK.
Ava stars alongside Katie and Tex in a five-minute lesson entitled “Katie and Tex Explore the Cloud.” She’s Katie’s lab assistant, who “visits Katie to help her with her experiments.” Ava was thrilled to contribute to a STEM-themed video. “It was a new experience for me … I like that she looks like me, and I liked that I could choose her name and give her my name,” Ava said. She added, “I helped choose Ava’s outfit and got to pick my favorite one the animators sent over. We had a showing in my class with popcorn and drinks! I loved it.”
The animators closely collaborated with Ava and her mother, Lyndsey Bennett, to ensure Ava was depicted as accurately as possible, from her mannerisms and physicality to her appearance. Inclusivity matters, and it’s essential for everyone to see themselves represented onscreen. Hats off to Tech She Can for working hard to inspire and educate young girls to break STEM barriers.
More importantly, big hats off to Ava Roberts for being a rockstar and teaching kids how much technology affects us daily!
Photo credit: The Independent