The Mohn Westlake Foundation is delighted to support The Invention Rooms at Imperial College London’s White City Campus, a unique community workshop space where people of every age and background can get creative with science, technology and making.The Foundation’s grant was pivotal in the establishment and development of The Invention Rooms, and helped with renovating the building and developing its core programme for children and young people.
At the heart of The Invention Rooms is the Dangoor Reach Out Makerspace, a bespoke workshop containing a variety of tools, materials and technologies that children and young people can use to turn their creative ideas into reality, with supervision and support from Imperial staff and students. Since the Makerspace opened in November 2017, more than 500 young people have taken part in making activities, from one-day taster sessions, to longer-term programmes like the Maker Challenge. As well as learning technical skills in the workshop, participants also get experience of business planning, making presentations and website design; transferable skills that build confidence and self-esteem.
In April 2019, with support from the Mohn Westlake Foundation, Imperial formally opened an Interaction Zone at The Invention Rooms, a welcoming space where the local community can take part in free hands-on activities, classes or tours. The flexible facilities include a community garden, a brand new café and space for exhibitions, displays and events. The launch of the Interaction Zone will provide a new home to a number of community projects based at The Invention Rooms, including Agents of Change, a women’s leadership programme which aims to help local women to feel confident in taking leadership roles; and What the Tech?! which offers the over-50s help in using their phone, tablet or computer.
“When we first developed our vision for our new campus in White City, we wanted to build an open, welcoming place that enriches the local area and invites the community to engage with our work. Central to this vision has been the creation of The Invention Rooms – a space that aims to inspire and enable people of every age and background to be creative, build prototypes and share in the fun of making and discovery. We are deeply grateful to the Mohn Westlake Foundation for their philanthropic support and partnership.”Professor Maggie Dallman, OBE, Vice President (International) and Associate Provost (Academic Partnerships) at Imperial
The Invention Rooms is also the base for Imperial College Advanced Hackspace, a 2,500 strong network of entrepreneurs and inventors from across Imperial. The Hackspace workshop at The Invention Rooms provides Imperial staff and student innovators with access to specialist prototyping and manufacturing equipment.
“I am very grateful to have been given the chance to participate in this programme as there are not many opportunities where we get to use such great facilities and learn so many things, especially at Imperial College London. The programme has made me more confident in exploring different ways of creating art with technology and I hope I get to utilise these skills during my gap year.”Lance, Maker Challenge participant
For more information on Imperial College London's Invention Rooms, please visit their website:
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