3,000 African girls to be trained in coding: UNECA

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The UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) on Friday announced that thousands of young female Africans will be trained in coding for development.

About 3,000 young females aged between 12 and 25 years will attend the camping in person in Cameroon’s Yaounde with a decentralized connection to the country’s “Silicon Mountain” in Buea, and also via a virtual platform.

The training is with the initiative dubbed “the Connected African Girls Coding Camp,” organized by the UNECA in partnership with the government of Cameroon, UNWOMEN, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and UNESCO.

Only 22.5 percent women in Africa have access to the internet as opposed to 33.8 percent of men, according to ECA.

The training scheduled to take place from June 28 to July 9 aims to get the young female Africans to develop coding and other cogitative skills for solving the continent’s contemporary problems, closing gender gaps and fighting poverty.

The camp is meant to promote African women’s access to ICTs, provide young females with the right foundation to find long-term success in employment, entrepreneurship or further education and build meaningful partnerships.

It includes technical domains such as animation, coding for fashion through the Turtle Stich embroidery, gaming and web development, robotics/internet of things (IoT) and 3D printing.

It will also comprise general cognitive processes including project development, design thinking, computational thinking, and the role of women in science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM).

The girls will also be guided to undertake a field trip to different innovation hubs in their respective countries and get mentored by various African role models and leaders in the STEAM field.

The camp will culminate in an “Innovation Fair and Project Exhibition” activity in which various groups will showcase concrete projects developed and compete for prizes.

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