Google partners to expand digital skills program to children in Nigeria and across SSA
Google today announced that it is expanding its Digital Skills for Africa program to reach children in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. Google is engaging local organisations via its partnership with the Cape Town Science Centre to train 200,000 students in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa within one year.
CS First is a Google program aimed at children aged 9 to 16. Created by educators and computer scientists, CS First introduces coding and computer science to students in a collaborative and creative club environment. CS First club members build projects in Scratch (scratch.mit.edu), a blocks-based programming language. The training will be delivered through 26 collaborating organisations across Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. For areas with limited access to the internet and limited devices, CS First may be delivered through CS Unplugged. Also, Google also aims to reach students through an Online Safety Roadshow project building on its work with the Web Rangers program. This project will reach parents, teachers and students in all three countries. Google is once again joining forces with SAP and UNESCO as part of Africa Code Week 2019 to engage community-focused organisations across Africa to enable them to host coding workshops for children (aged 11-18) in their local communities during Africa Code Week this month. Some 55 organisations have been identified across the continent. These activities form part of Google’s commitment to training 10 million Africans in digital skills by 2022. “The training programmes promise to improve the children’s confidence in interacting with computers and their overall confidence and willingness to try new things,” says Mojolaoluwa Aderemi-Makinde, head of brand and reputation, SSA. “With growing internet penetration across Africa and the increasing trend of kids interacting online, Google believes it is important to provide helpful information to children and parents to enable children to take appropriate measures to stay safe online while exploring the internet with confidence. The training takes learnings from Google ́s Be Internet Awesome campaign and the content is carefully drafted to provide helpful tips to kids and parents, and information on useful tools like Google’s Family Link.”