Microsoft, Ondo government, others partner to train 7,200 girls on ICT

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Microsoft Nigeria has partnered Tech4Dev and the Ondo State government to train 7200 young women on Information Communication Technology (ICT) across the country as part of efforts at building capacity to solve social problems.

Tech4Dev said the initiative tagged: Nigerian Women Techsters (NWT), is a drive to bridge the gender digital gap in an unprecedented manner, targeting young women in 12 states across the country.

The Programme Manager, Peace Odili, announced this at Government House, Akure, adding that the programme, partly funded by Microsoft, will train 7,200 women between ages of 18-40 on coding skills.

She revealed that training sessions would be held with participants taking online courses in entrepreneurship and change making, while physical training sessions facilitated by professionals in the ICT industry would be held at weekends.

“Tech4Dev with support of Microsoft is partnering office of the first ladies, state ministries of women affairs and the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs across in 12 states with high female-male parity in the technology sector to establish the NWT Initiative,” she said.

The beneficiary states are: Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo, Edo, Kogi, Kwara, Abia, Imo, Rivers, Kano, Kaduna and Kebbi, she added, revealing that the training would last for three years.

She said the organization recently trained about 200 youths including 70 ladies in Lagos and Ondo states on digital literacy, especially coding and analytical skills.

She said interested young women should apply to the firm’s website with the first cohort scheduled for Ondo, Ekiti and Oyo states.

Executive Director of Tech4Dev, Joel Ogunsola, said the group is a non-profit driven, social enterprise focused on solving the world’s greatest problems through technology with primary focus on public health, civic engagement and education.

Ogunsola, who noted that the initiative also considered People Living With Disabilities (PWDs), said the NWT was conceived to help solve the growing problem of unemployment that has continued to plague youths, especially young women in underserved communities.

Representative of Microsoft Nigeria, Olusola Amusan, noted that the organisation was supporting the initiative to bridge the gender gap, saying, “We are proud be with this initiative and will support it all through the three years life span.”

Amusan expressed hope that the initiative will help to empower families who would benefit from the programme, lauding wife of the state governor, Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu for her support and interest in the future of the girl-child.

Anyanwu-Akeredolu, who is the Chairperson of the Advisory Board of the NWT Initiative, described it as timely.



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