Co-Create Change with Girls in the TechTackle Initiative

Carolyn Seaman
Posted April 18, 2020 from Nigeria

I am leading a ‘TechTackle Initiative’ to build adolescent girls’ digital skills and empower them to improve their critical problem thinking and their capacity to innovate technology solutions to critical issues, particularly those affecting girls and women. The TechTackle initiative implements various tech activities including training, hackathons, mentoring, pitches, techxibitions and other similar activities. The TechTackle program aligns with the goal of Girls Voices Initiative to promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) among public school girls who lack access to such training to increase their access to opportunities in the digital world we live in.

The TechTackle project will impact 250 vulnerable girls in the public secondary school system. The girls will be taught a variety of tech skills including coding, design thinking, research, app inventor, scratch, python, prototyping, completing a computer-based test among other digital skills. Other indirect beneficiaries are policymakers, parents, teachers, and other stakeholders in the communities that the girls directly influence.

The TechTackle project needs partners who value the little things that they can contribute to support the girls to acquire the digital skills that empower them. Top of our needs are computers, software, suitable venue, and refreshments for the girls. You can join to make a difference in the lives of these girls by sending us your old laptop or tablet which can provide these girls with the hands-on experience at the training and other activities. Or you may choose to donate to our organization to cover other project costs including venue, refreshments and the other anticipated project costs.

The TechTackle project already launched and impacted 45 girls from 9 public secondary schools and the girls successfully delivered an engaging hackathon competition pitching innovative solutions including prototypes they created to address justice issues in Nigeria including trafficking, rape, drug abuse, corruption, etc. The winning teams won various digital devices including laptops, tablets, digital calculators etc. to reward their performances. Following the hackathon, the girls went through a 5-weeks summer Python training programme. And early in the year, we targeted 100 girls in their final year in secondary school to empower them with the requisite digital skills that they require to successfully complete their Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Computer-Based Test (CBT) which is the entrance examinations to transition into the university. The impact of the training was rich as the girls got to familiarize themselves with the CBT platform and take some practice test which they reviewed to observe their performance and weak areas that they must improve upon to perform better in the final examination. After the COVID-19 lockdown, other TechTackle activities are anticipated to support the girls to explore a hackathon around the energy sector so the girls can explore tech solutions to energy issues in their communities. Other impact is anticipated in other coding and tech activities planned for the rest of the year.  Join us to co-create impact to promote girls in STEM!

To mark the International Girls in ICT Day, we have mobilized the girls to keep connecting and exploring ideas via WhatsApp. They will be sharing quotes and videos highlighting their challenges with ICT education and their dreams for the future. While we all #StayHomeStaySafe, the girls will collaborate via WhatsApp and other technology media they can access to carry out a remote hackathon to explore innovative solutions to the Corona Virus pandemic. The hackathon launches on the International Girls in ICT Day and the highlights of their progress and outcome will be shared on our social media channels. Other tech resources will be shared on our social media as the nternational Girls in ICT Day is very important to Girls Voices and our work. Let's support girls to access ICT education to expand horizons and change attitudes. #GirlsCanCode #GirlsInnovate #GenerationEquality #LogOnRiseUp #GirlsVoices

This story was submitted in response to Become a Featured Changemaker.

Comments 19

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Chi8629
Apr 18
Apr 18

Thank you for sharing,
Stay safe.

Carolyn Seaman
Apr 24
Apr 24

Dear Chioma,
Thank you for reading and sharing a comment.
Stay safe too.
Carolyn

Chi8629
Apr 24
Apr 24

Anytime Precious Sister.
Warm regards.

Jill Langhus
Apr 20
Apr 20

Hello Again Dear Carolyn,

Another great initiative that your NGO has created. Thanks for sharing your update. So, is this an ongoing initiative, or are there stages to it, since you had mentioned there will be 250 total girls, but that you've already impacted 45? Do you have a fundraiser link to share, or have you shared it on FB? If so, I can share it on social media, too. Just let me know:-) Good luck, and please keep us posted.

XX

Carolyn Seaman
Apr 24
Apr 24

Dear Jill,
Thank you for your ever-generous love and support for me and our work. And yes! We designed the TechTackle to be our annual tech innovation project with the girls. However, our target is to reach 250 girls within the duration of my current digital ambassador period. And so far, we have actually reached 145 girls. The COVID-19 pandemic got in the way of some of our activities but we feel really blessed to be able to keep engaging the girls online.
Regarding our fundraiser, we are working to set up a PayPal account to allow us to receive donations from around the world. I will do an update with that information soonest. In the meantime, I will appreciate donations of used computers, tablets or smartphones which will greatly help our girls to build their technology skills. Thank you.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Jill Langhus
Apr 25
Apr 25

Hello Love:-)

You're very welcome, and you bet!!

Cool! Sounds like you're well on your way, then! I bet!

Okay on fundraiser. Sounds like a plan:-)

Hope you and your family are safe and well, dear!

XX

pjames
Apr 21
Apr 21

Thanks for sharing about your TechTackle initiative - very impressive program! I especially like how the program combines addressing social justice issues with learning STEM. You really are a changemaker!

Carolyn Seaman
Apr 24
Apr 24

Dear Sister,
I deeply appreciate your kind words and I am poised to keep building the changemakers to continue the work after us. Thank you.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Beth Lacey
Apr 22
Apr 22

This is a great initiative. You are helping so many girls in a critical way

Carolyn Seaman
May 18
May 18

Thank you, Beth! It's a blessing to work with and for girls. I believe in the power the girls possess to transfer their learning from generation to generation. You are also a part of the amazing journey when you share your love with us and support for our work. I appreciate you!
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Anita Shrestha
Apr 24
Apr 24

Thank you for sharing. Keep it continue

Carolyn Seaman
Apr 24
Apr 24

Dear Anita,
Thank you for reading and sharing your kind words of encouragement. I appreciate you.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Dija
Apr 24
Apr 24

Will love to join the WhatsApp group. As a gender based violence Activist, will love to be informed more about the information.

Carolyn Seaman
Apr 24
Apr 24

Dear Dija,
Thank you for sharing with us. The girls are currently busy exploring ideas and collaborating on their hackathon. However, we will be able to introduce you to them after they have concluded their hackathon project. In the meantime, please inbox me your number so I can add you on.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Juliet Obiri
Apr 25
Apr 25

Carry on dear. This is a great initiative and I think will empower these young women to become economically empowered through the use of technology.
Keep it up.

Carolyn Seaman
May 18
May 18

Dear Juliet,
Thank you for reading and commenting and for your kind words of encouragement. It is always a blessing to work with and for girls and I agree with you that digital skills help to empower girls economically. Thank you.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

Busayo Obisakin
Apr 30
Apr 30

Wonderful Initiative Carolyn! Thanks for sharing. Please continue to stay safe
Love
Busayo

Carolyn Seaman
May 18
May 18

Dear Mama Busayo,
Thank you for your constant support and cheers for our work. I appreciate you ma. I will stay safe and wish you safety and wellness to ma'am.
Kind regards,
Carolyn

lemonadelemon
Aug 30
Aug 30

Thank you for sharing and stay save