There has been a lot of awareness and traction for tech and digital skills in the country since the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic. There has been particular focus on skills such as web designing, web development, backend development, data science and analysis, and more. During the pandemic, many digital platforms offered discounts on premium courses as well as free courses. Because of this, corporate entities are now keying into this initiative by sponsoring young people who are keen on acquiring digital skills.
This is why GetBundi has offered free coding courses to young African women. GetBundi Education Foundation is the corporate social responsibility arm of GetBundi Education Technology Limited. The firm has committed to the online training of 500 African women in coding from June 1 to August 31, 2023. The courses will cost the participants no money. This initiative is coming at a time when there is a huge gap in digital skills on the continent especially among women.
“TechSis 2023” is a reversal of the male-dominated industry.
The term tagged the initiative “TechSis 2023.” According to them, it is a reversal of the male-dominated tech industry. It has become something of a folklore that almost everyone now expects every tech person to a male on average. It has been so deep that there is a term for them, “Tech Bros.” The initiative aims to bridge the digital skill gender inequality in Africa. The course coordinator at GetBundi, Mrs. Juliet Ijei, had said that the free coding courses registration will start on April 24 and end on May 23, 2023, or after the first 500 women must have registered.
She gives the rationale behind the TechSis project. It was an effort to give women and girls a better deal and an opportunity to find a footing in the tech industry, which has been dominated by man for years. It is also to prepare them to assume their rightful place at the heights of the new economy. According to her, research has revealed that only 30 percent of African women constitute the tech industry, a sign that they are highly unrepresented in the sector.
Beneficiaries admonished to take the training seriously.
As the foundation kicks off the first edition of its free coding training, experts in the industry have admonished beneficiaries to make the best out of it. The experts spoke during the opening ceremony of the event, which held virtually on June 1, 2023. Speaking at the ceremony, Prof. Florence Emenalo, the director of Centre for Women and Gender Studies, Imo State University, reiterated the unequal representation and participation of women in the technology sector. She said that this was observable in the gender ratios of female students pursuing degrees in tech-related disciplines and in the low percentage of women in technical roles within the sector.
Emenalo said that there is a general lack of interest in technology for young girls when they begin to think about potential careers. In her presentation, titled, “TechSis 2023: Bridging the Gender Divide in Digital Technology in Africa,” she revealed that only three percent of girls say a career in technology is their first choice. However, she commended `GetBundi for supporting these women. The 500 African women are aged 18 and above are to learn coding, a top-demand skill. She also praised GetBundi for projecting to support the upskilling of 10 million Africans in the next 10 years through STEM and STI digital skills.
Guests of honor lauded the foundation for launching the initiative.
They tagged the skill acquisition “The GetBundi Vision 2033.” One of the guests, Olatomiwa Williams, Microsoft Country Manager for Nigeria and Ghana, commended GetBundi as well as the beneficiaries, saying the initiative would have great positive impact on not just the women participants but also on their families, communities, and Africa at large. Others who attended the event include: Ms. Amanda Kazzy Cryer, co-founder of Big Change Makers, and Nora Agbakhamen, Practitioner Coach at Big Change Makers.
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