Impact Hub Harare in partnership with Eskills4Girls on Wednesday 8th of November 2017 hosted a coding workshop for girls at Tynwald High School.
The workshop focal group were girls aged between 10 and 18years. Over 150 girls participated from six schools, four of them being primary schools namely Tynwald Primary, Masaisai Primary, Kirkman Primary and Mother Touch Primary, the two high Schools being Tynwald High School and Mother Touch High School.
By Lindsay Chiswe
Tadzoka Pswarayi Co- founder of Impact Hub Harare said that the program for Eskills4Girls was done in commemoration of Africa code week. “We have brought together girls from different schools to learn about technology introducing them to coding, programming and robotics which is currently being done here at Tynwald High School” she said.
The workshop was organised in such a way that primary and high school participants were given the opportunity to get to know about programming and coding. Participants passed through five phases with activities that were related to coding which include scratch, python, robotics game development, frampol stand and also to the science laboratories to have an appreciation of sciences.
Pswarayi said that the workshop targeted girls only to increase the awareness of opportunities for women in the digital sector because there is gender bias when it comes to technology.
“We have been socialised to believe that they are certain tasks suited for women, and certain careers for men, we are targeting women specifically because there is gender imparity in the ICT. Women are left behind in technology and we want to demystify technology to girls from a young age and also to focus on women because we need to specifically target women to understand that technology is for everyone”, she said.
Tsitsi Chigorimbo student from Kirkman Primary said she really benefited a lot from the workshop.
“I learnt that you can do anything and we are all encouraged to participate in technology information”, she said.
The workshop was a pilot project and plans to expand the project to other provinces next year are underway.
Viginia Mutandwa , Headmistress at Tynwald High School, expressed her feelings as she was happy to have hosted a successful Impact Hub workshop.
“Impact Hub did their best to explain to both students and teachers and I am sure everyone went away with something to share to their schools, we shall need to meet again with schools to ensure that we do some friendly competitions on whether we have understood what it means to decode or program. I am very proud of schools that came because they made our day”, she said.
Pswarayi, encouraged more students to participate in developmental and technological initiatives.
“A lot of times we wait and limit these projects and programs to adults and we are losing the most intelligent part of the community and their ideas, there is need for emphasis on catching them young and really pushing kids to be participants in their own lives and their communities.
Eskills4Girls is an initiative supported by Africa Coding week to overcome the gender imparity and promote education skills paving way for employment opportunities for girls and women in the digital world.