Microsoft Philanthropies and non-profit Tech4dev have launched a girls and women training program across Africa. The initiative aims to bridge the digital and technology divide to ensure equal access to opportunities across Africa. What better way for the iconic bluechip giant to mark International Women’s Day celebrations and champion for gender equality of all races.
The Women Techstars Initiative targets girls between the ages of 16 to 40 and is drawn across 54 African countries. This training will focus on technical skills such as product design, software development, AI engineering, data science, and cybersecurity.
The programme will feature several boot camps, open days, and masterclasses delivered in form of a virtual program targeting women and girls across Africa. The idea is to leverage the use of technology in their career advancement and business growth.
Ghada Khalifa, the Regional Director- Microsoft Philanthropies MEA described how empowering women in the ICT industry not only unlocks innovation but also opens up economic opportunities. A report by UNCTAD cautioned that Africa’s inequality will worsen unless concrete steps are taken to bridge the continent’s digital divide.
The Women Techsters coding program will run for a year and utilize standardized learning curriculums, First is a three-month training program followed by a six-month internship before finally being enrolled in a training program. Microsoft has a broader plan, the ‘Africa Inclusion plan’ to skill 6 million people by year-end 2023.