Intel targets to close the technology divide for hundreds of women and girls in Kenya

Posted: October 12, 2013 in Politics/Current issues



Intel has announced its collaboration with Akirachix to launch a countrywide initiative that will see more Kenyan girls start to develop technology applications.

This was announced today during celebarations to mark the United Nations second day of the girl held in Nairobi. There will a 2-day free training session organised annually in Nairobi, Eldoret, Kisumu and Mombasa for the girls interested in coding. According to the programme, the session will be limited to only 25 girls per class and will be open to all Kenyan girls.

 Speaking during the event, Agatha Gikunda, Intel East Africa’s software and service lead said they are convinced that technology and education have real power to fuel transformation.

’Diversity is crucial to succeed in new technologies. We are convinced that technology and education have real power to fuel transformative change and hence the reason why Intel is collaborating with other industry players such as Akirachix to see as many girls as possible make a mark in the technology world,’’ she said

This launch comes after last week’s global announcement by Intel that it was launching a new program dubbed ‘’she will connect’’ that commits to expand digital literacy skills to young women in developing countries. Intel will begin the initiative in Africa, where it says the gender gap is the greatest. Intel also aims at reaching 5 million women in this program and reduce the gender gap by 50 percent. To achieve this objective, Intel will be working with a diverse set of partners including global and local NGOs and governments.

According to a ‘’Women and the Web’’ report  finding released by Intel in January this year, there is an enormous internet gender gap in the developing world, social and economic benefits for securing internet access for women.  The report issued a call to action for all the stakeholders involved to double the number of girls and women online in developing countries in three years.

 ‘’She Will Connect demonstrate Intels’s commitment to this action by not only providing digital literacy skills to girls and women, but also by pushing the concept of digital literacy forward through new innovative and scalable models’’. Agatha Gikunda said

According to Agatha, the program will test a new model that integrates digital literacy with gender and development programming targeting women and girls.

Linda Kamau, the vice president of Akirachix said technology is one of the key factors driving Africa’s projected economic rise.

‘’In a continent where women form majority of the population and half of the workforce, it is an anomaly that the percentage of women working in technology is less than 15 percent’’ she said  

Linda said as Akirachix they welcomed Intel’s partnership as they believe there is an enormous potential for maximising the growth of technology through increasing the number of quality of women in technology.

 By Nixon Kanali, Nairobi


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