For the past year, I’ve been volunteering in Cambridge, Massachusetts and Kampala, Uganda to help students, mainly girls, learn to code. It’s been a wonderful experience. Each One Teach One is a new organization dedicated to training women and girls on computer skills, from writing software to the hardware on which it runs. The goal is to help the interested and talented women and girls to learn to code and understand information technology so they can get jobs. Empowering girls and women to get technical jobs by giving them confidence in a safe environment can have tremendous impacts on their future safety, earnings, and positive self-image.
Each One Teach One (EOTO) has just received its first grant which is from the City of Cambridge as part of the 2015 Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program. The high school students will be working for a number of local non-profits to help them with their IT needs; from developing websites to current inventory to hardware upgrades.
The girls from Kampala have been making great progress on learning to code. Their enthusiasm and commitment under tremendous social peer pressure to follow a more traditional path is paying off. Together we have overcome many logistical challenges; such as attaining reliable Internet access, the sheer travel distances required by the girls, and securing affordable bandwidth and laptops. The girls are learning to code on the Ruby language with an eye towards remote contracting around the world.
As the new Chairman of the Board, I’d like to thank our partners and volunteers for making all of this happen over the past wonderful year. We’re looking to expand with additional partners, volunteers, and more stable funding.