We’ve Opened a Computer Lab for Girls in Kibera! June 12, 2015 by Nick Johnson
Being a girl in Kibera is tough. The hardships of poverty manifest in difficult ways for girls, leading to issues like early marriage and the pressure to start a family, lack of access to education, and gender-based violence. It’s been proven time and again that strong, educated girls make resilient communities. Giving girls opportunities to empower and better themselves helps everyone.
When it comes to economic concerns, this last statement is especially true. That’s why CFK’s Economic and Entrepreneurship Department is offering another space and activity just for girls: we’ve opened a new computer lab in Kibera! This initiative is the result of a new partnership with Nairobits, an organization based in Nairobi that strives to empower marginalized youth living in slums by offering training in different aspects of multimedia, entrepreneurship, and life skills.
The new CFK-Nairobits Girls Center exists exclusively for girls interested in learning about several multimedia topics, including computer basics, web and graphic design, coding in many different languages, and online research. But the scope of Nairobits’ classes goes further than that. In addition to technological hard skills, girls are taught about entrepreneurship and how it applies to computing. There’s also an emphasis on topics like marketing, both as a concept and as it applies to the girls themselves through their CVs, portfolio, and self-advocacy. Training adolescent girls in these topics helps equip them for economic opportunities in the future by preparing them for their future careers while also fostering in them a sense of creativity and innovation in the field of technology.
CFK aims to mobilize Kiberan girls to attend the center while monitoring and evaluating the program’s progress. Nairobits provides support, training, and guidance for students who choose to enroll. Volunteers from CFK have attended classes at Nairobits before with incredible success. Through this new arrangement—and based on positive interaction in the past—we are reaching many more girls so they can build professional skills, creativity, and confidence in the intersecting worlds of technology and entrepreneurship.