Reforge Charleston seeks to promote technological literacy in the community. Our inclusive approach to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) education seeks to engage all ages, skill levels, and cultural backgrounds.
Our core vision involves the establishment and support of creation spaces. These are unique physical locations where technical knowledge, specialized equipment, and cooperation drive the education of anyone in the community with the desire to learn and the daring to create. Each location will serve as a fountainhead for different educational opportunities, programs and projects within their respective communities. There are a number of similar spaces already in existence around our country including independent makerspaces and hackerspaces. Unfortunately, they suffer from a number of problems, namely disjointed and poorly run organizations, distraction from their core purpose, and an inability to deliver on any charitable goals. Many become burdened with the demands of daily management which removes them from focusing on their mission critical development. These spaces tend to be ephemeral in nature, often either dissolving or settling into fraternal co-ops before they can deliver a real benefit to their communities. A growing trend is for people to become clients of for-profit makerspaces which are basically devoid of truly inclusive, charitable community benefit. The vision of Reforge Charleston is to dramatically alter this maker landscape. We will create and develop a growing network of regional creation spaces. These will be affordable and inclusive, eventually reaching to rural as well as urban communities. This network of creation spaces will be supported by centralized management of legal and administrative services provided by Reforge Charleston. This enables shared services and greater financial efficiencies which helps the creation spaces in the network to develop. Furthermore, a synergy of ideas, methods and practices will be shared amongst the entities, allowing for greater development and expansion of the network.