Chilamate students using mobile tablet lab in class.

Chilamate students using oobile tablet lab in class.

In the very near future, poverty will be measured not only by access to basic things like food, clean water, shelter and health services, but increasingly by education and access to technology. The World Leadership Foundation (WLF) recognizes that being on the wrong side of the “digital divide” will put schools and communities in developing countries at a profound disadvantage for accessing high-quality education and training, participating in democratic societies, obtaining health information, buying and selling of goods and services and finding employment.

Students explore aps and educational programs on the WLF mobile tablet lab.

Students explore educational apps and programs on the TabLab.

WLF rejects the idea of traditional computer labs because of the extensive costs affiliated with the building and upkeep of such labs. Buildings, solar panels, networking equipment, desktop computers, furniture, staff and, most importantly, a climate control system can cost close to $150,000.00.

To help communities, specifically children, step to the other side of the “digital divide,”
the WLF Board of Directors began to conceptualize a low-cost computer lab that could be used in humid climates and in places that lacked Internet and electricity. The idea was hatched to pilot a TabLab. Generously funded entirely by the WLF Board of Directors, the TabLab Program purchased 10 computer tablets and a laptop, which serves as a server that communicates wirelessly with each tablet. The server content includes the best of Wikipedia, the Kahn Academy, Guttenberg eBooks and other content that each tablet user can explore on the server. In addition, a variety of apps were downloaded that do not require an Internet connection. The total cost of the lab was less than $7,000.00 – a significant cost savings over the traditional computer lab model. In addition, OtterBox graciously donated water and shockproof cases for all the tablets. The TabLab was shipped to Costa Rica in July 2012. Since arriving in Costa Rica, the lab has regularly visited four local schools as part of the weekly school curriculum. The Lab has visited an additional 13 other schools on a one-time basis, and local teachers are hugely excited to incorporate tablet technology into their own classrooms. It is our goal to meet the demands of these underserved classrooms by expanding our TabLab program.

WLF Mobile Tablet lab travels to Chilamate schools.

WLF TabLab travels to Chilamate schools.

WLF Mobile Tablet Lab is unloaded in Costa Rica Chilamate Rainforest.

WLF TabLab is unloaded in Costa Rica Chilamate Rainforest.

Mobile tablet lab is prepared for Chilamate students. Pura Vida!

TabLab is prepared for Chilamate students. Pura Vida!


Our current Mobile Tablet Lab hold 10 iPads and a MacBook Pro that functions as a server.

Our current TabLab hold 10 iPads and a MacBook Pro that functions as a server.