Ghana: Birim Central Commemorates “Coding Caravan.”

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  • Companies are collaborating to commemorate a program code-named “Coding Caravan”
  • The coding caravan initiative is to expedite Ghana’s digitization efforts toward STEM education, with a focus on the female child.
  • The ministry is also developing a rural telephone and digital inclusion initiative that will link three million Ghanaians.

The Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications in collaboration with the Institute of ICT Professionals Ghana and the International Girls in ICT Day 2023, has commemorated a program code-named “Coding Caravan Project”, branded “Digital Skills for Life.”

This program is a digital skill education campaign that aims to raise young children’s attention to the benefits of ICT and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. The initiative was to mark this year’s International Day of Girls in ICT.

The Director of Education for Birim Central Municipality, Mrs. Esther Quaye-Sowah while addressing the session, expressed their determination and desire to collaborate with entities whose goal was to promote the competencies of the girl child in STEM. She emphasized the importance of ICT as an important aspect of STEM and stated that 200 basic schoolgirls from different institutions were chosen for the activity.

“The entire world is seeking to embrace transformation to better their socio-economic development through STEM education, and Ghana cannot be left behind,” she said.

The Ministry of Communication and Digitization is driving the coding caravan initiative to expedite Ghana’s digitization efforts towards STEM education, with a focus on the female child. This action, according to Mrs. Quaye-Sowah, has the potential to help reduce gender disparity in Ghana. She also advised young girls and other participants to work hard to get the necessary skills that would help in addressing current social problems as well as creating job prospects for females at the technological center. Esther Quaye Sowah said the municipality was desirous to collaborate with any institution whose goal was to improve the skills of girl-child education, particularly in areas such as science technology engineering, and mathematics (STEM) of which ICT formed a vital element. She said the municipality was undertaking a lot of activities in ICT to promote girls’ competencies in technology, science, and mathematics at the basic level. 

Mrs. Ruth Kyere Fekaah, Deputy Director of Finance and Administration at the Ministry of Communication and Digitalization, speaking on behalf of Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, the substantive minister, stated that the ministry intends to provide basic computer literacy training to 5000 girls by the end of 2023. She further said girls and women needed to take advantage of today’s pace of innovation in ICT by pursuing a career in ICT, which is why the ministry launched the Girls in ICT project to boost their interest in ICT education. She said because females outnumber males, it was important to train more females in ICT, otherwise, the country would be left behind. Given that, the minister said this year alone, the ministry was looking for the training of 5,000 girls in primary four to junior high school two.

In addition, the ministry is developing a rural telephone and digital inclusion initiative that will link three million Ghanaians.

Mr. Kenneth Ashigbey, CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, stated that starting on the Coding Caravan, an exercise that teaches young people how to utilize ICT to tackle social challenges is critical. He added that the number of women participating in ICT in the nation was quite low and that encouraging girls’ engagement from an early age is necessary to overcome the gender gap in the ICT field. He recommended that basic school children seize the chance to use ICT tools equitably and beneficially while avoiding the negative effects linked to ICT.

Mr. Ashigbey urged societies to invest in ICT education to find solutions to the current challenges. He said his outfit would collaborate with the Institute of ICT Professionals to embark on awareness programs to enlighten the students on  ICT. According to him, in the past, one was only required to read and write, which had now changed to the use of ICT to solve problems.

Mrs. Juliana Ametorwogo, Women’s Lead for the Institute of ICT Professionals Ghana, told Ghana News Agency that the Coding Caravan 2023 seeks to raise the interest of young children at their tender age. She said the IIPGH was collaborating with Vodafone Ghana to teach over a thousand females coding throughout the year to increase education and visibility about ICT and STEM.

The IIPGH has taken several measures to contribute to ICT education but believes that it is a significant duty to provide ICT education to every Ghanaian.

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