AfDB launches programme to train African youth in coding skills

Africa Coding StoryThe programme will create more than 9mn jobs and reach 32mn youth in Africa, according to the AfDB. (Image source: World Bank Photo Collection/Flickr)The African Development Bank (AfDB), along with the Rockefeller Foundation, Microsoft and Facebook launched a programme to train African youth in coding skills

The Coding for Employment Program was launched at the African Innovation Summit in Kigali, Rwanda and is aimed at helping youth improve their coding skills and land jobs.

The programme will create more than 9mn jobs and reach 32mn youth in Africa, according to a statement from the AfDB.

“Coding for Employment accelerates investments in Africa’s most valuable resource – its young women and men. That’s why The Rockefeller Foundation is thrilled to join forces with the African Development Bank to help every young African reach their full potential. Our partnership with the African Development Bank will establish 130 Centers of Excellence across Africa to help bridge the gap between the digital hiring news of employers and the skills of Africa’s youth,” said Mamadou Biteye, The Rockefeller Foundation’s managing director for Africa.

“Digital skills are fast becoming essential for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Unfortunately, these skills are beyond the reach of too many young people in Africa. Together with our partners like the African Development Bank, we are working to change that. The partnership between Microsoft and the African Development Bank will continue to focus on increasing the participation of underserved youth and women while equipping youth across Africa with the skills needed to fill jobs now and in the future,” Ghada Khalifa, director of Microsoft Philanthropies for the Middle East and Africa, said.

“We are excited to partner with the African Development Bank on the launch of the coding for employment program in Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda and Senegal. Coding for Employment ensures digital skills are accessible to young people and supports youth with securing meaningful opportunities where they can apply their talents, ideas and expertise to advance the continent’s economic and social development,” said Sherry Dzinoreva, head of Policy Programs at Facebook.

“By working together with the private sector, donors, policy-makers, and other stakeholders, we can secure a brighter future for young African women and men. As part of this new Program, we seek to cultivate the next generation of innovators and to empower young women to lead the continent’s digital revolution. Investments in youth through programs like Coding for Employment can stimulate inclusive economic growth, put Africa and its youth on the cutting edge of technological innovations and ensure the digital transformation of Africa is led and managed by young Africans for the benefit of the people of Africa,” said Oley Dibba-Wadda, director of Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development at the African Development Bank.

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