Take a telescope to Príncipe

by Galileo Teacher Training Program
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To assist the students from the Príncipe High School Astronomy Club fund the transportation of their first telescope.

  Education, Astronomy

Global for Local is a free program supported by the Galileo Teacher Training Program to provide aid (at no cost) to small astronomy education and outreach projects that, with a little funding, can make a huge difference in local struggling communities. 

We were contacted by Joana Latas, a teacher from Portugal working on the Island of Príncipe, who wishes to help the students from the Príncipe High School Astronomy Club fund the transportation for their first telescope.

Here is their story.


By Joana Latas 

Photo I:  Our new Astronomy Club will organise observation sessions in local communities.

Príncipe High School is starting its own Astronomy Club, where in one of the activities we intend to do monthly night sky observations in different communities within Principe Island. Currently, we have a telescope in Portugal, but we need support to transport it to Príncipe. 

The Club’s night sky observation sessions will happen in different areas on Príncipe Island, allowing the general community the chance to learn to identify celestial bodies while promoting the right illumination of public spaces. These actions will strengthen a close relationship between Man and the Sky while teaching Science. 

The Club is composed of students from Príncipe High School that will promote night sky observation sessions coordinated by their Physics and Mathematics teachers.

Photo II: The students learn about Sun-Earth system.

Science outreach, especially Astronomy is studied in the Principe High School program. Annually, we celebrate the solar eclipse astronomical observation of May 29, 1919 that occurred on this island. In 2013, a project was specifically developed and devoted to mark a partial solar eclipse visible from this island. We have been GTTP members since 2013 and within the scope of this international program we have participated in several international projects such as the Skylight Opera and other teacher training programs.

   Photo III: Many Physics and Mathematics teachers took part in astronomy teacher training. 

The Astronomy Club and Science outreach that has been implemented in Principe Island has already gathered the support of HBD, the Principe Trust, the Regional Government of Principe and Astronomy Associations in Portugal, and our wish of having a telescope here in Principe is almost a reality: the telescope was donated by one of these Portuguese associations, NUCLIO, and the Príncipe Trust will support this by providing transport and fuel on the island when the sky observations take place. The Astronomy Club meets weekly in a library at one of the High Schools in Principe. 

The donors will support the final and key aspect of the project by funding the transport of the telescope, to reach the students in Principe. Without the telescope, the whole project is at risk.


  Budget Breakdown

Air transport Lisbon São Tomé Island: 100 USD
Air transport São Tomé Principe Island: 80 USD
Transportation insurance coverage: 240 USD


  Risks and Challenges

We have tried to find different types of support to facilitate the transportation for the telescope, yet this will delay the project indefinitely and delay the chances of the current students, who have worked so hard for the club, to experience one of the most important activities of an astronomy club: to learn how to use a telescope and observe the night Sky.


Take a telescope to Príncipe

To assist the students from the Príncipe High School Astronomy Club fund the transportation of their first telescope.