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Girls Into Coding: Highlights of 2022 and What 2023 Holds for Us

Girls Into Coding: Highlights of 2022 and What 2023 Holds for Us

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This time last year we were weighing up the highlights and challenges of 2021 — has it really been a year?

Well, they say time flies when you’re having fun or working hard, and we’ve certainly been doing both. We’ve expanded our reach so much, continued engaging with people online and face to face, and seen young women and girls in STEM grow in confidence and ability, proud to share their knowledge and passion with their peers.

Here’s just a snapshot of what we did in 2022, and what we’re aiming for in 2023.

Reach and Impact

We provide hands-on workshops (in-person and virtual) on a variety of exciting STEM education and tech education topics to girls. In our virtual events, we’ve had attendees from the USA, Canada, South Africa, Denmark, Poland, Spain, France, Czech Republic, Kenya, Suriname, Nigeria, Ireland, Singapore, and The Netherlands. That’s hundreds of girls getting hands-on with bespoke robotics and physical computing kits, learning about 3D printing, and absorbing coding knowledge that will open up so many doors for them in the future.

Co-founder Avye Couloute hosts and mentors at events, and at around the same age as many of the attendees, they can see first-hand exactly what a girl can achieve with the right resources and support.

Hybrid Program of Events

With the success of our virtual events in 2020 and 2021, we’re delighted that these have continued throughout 2022, along with live, face-to-face events where the girls can meet in person where possible. This makes our organisation so accessible, as literally, anyone with an internet connection can attend. We’ve run 34 hands-on virtual events and over a hundred workshops. We design and post out robotics and physical computing kits, so every girl has exactly what she needs to join in.

Development of New Workshops

One of our biggest wins of 2022 is the new workshops we’ve introduced to our events. This allows girls in tech to try new things but also to understand the impact that emerging technologies are having on our world.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AI is a hot topic and one that’s often misunderstood — by both kids and parents! We were delighted to introduce our new workshop on AI and machine learning for aspiring young women in tech that want to know the role that AI could play in their future.

Internet of Things (IoT)

Many kids own an IoT device now or have access to one, whether it’s a smart speaker or a fitness band. We felt it was important to incorporate IoT into our workshops, introducing girls to the concept, how it works, and why IoT is important.

Robotics and Physical Computing

Robotics and coding go hand in hand, and in 2022 we expanded our robotics offering to include additional projects. This included using Python to control a micro:bit, which in turn controlled a physical robot. When it comes to coding, girls’ education is often lagging behind their male counterparts, due to widespread misconceptions about girls’ abilities and interests. That’s why peer-to-peer sessions like this are so important for sparking young women’s passion for tech.

First Girls Into Coding 3-Day Bootcamp

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This was our first 3-day programme of events including many of the above topics plus engineering, physical computing, coding, and making. As well as creating 3D content for a Virtual/Physical “Metropolis” Exhibit, the girls were encouraged to safely use relevant equipment and tools such as drills and soldering irons — ideal for anyone hoping to pursue a hands-on tech career.

Renewable Energy

We launched our first-ever workshop event themed entirely around Renewable Energy. The girls were able to wire up a model smart home and build a wind turbine and solar generator. They generated renewable energy which was fed into a simulation of The National Grid, and also used it to power up different features of their own smart homes.
The girls wrote codes and tried different designs for the generators and explored ways to optimise their energy generation. They competed with other participants to see who could generate the most. We aim to run more of these themed events in 2023.

Sponsors, Partners & Funders

In 2022 we continued to develop existing relationships with our key sponsorship & funding partners and establish some new ones.

We are now delighted to Include: Epam; Red Hat; School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE); Octopus Energy; Ocado; Angular London MeetUp; Nvidia; Microsoft Reactor; Understanding Recruitment; Hammerson; Talis; Arm; The National Lottery Community Fund; Merton Giving Fund; Chanade Hemming & her Virgin Media O2 Team, Akua Opong, and Common Call among our partners.

In 2023 we’ll strive to bring onboard new partners to help us continue to create free hands-on tech opportunities and reach our yearly goal of directly engaging at least 1000 girls.

Awards and Accolades

We’re so delighted to have received so much recognition this year for the work we do in our communities and beyond. Avye was selected as a National Lottery Young Hero. The awarding representative said she was “incredibly inspirational” and was particularly impressed by her dedication to helping others develop new skills that would help increase their opportunities.

In 2022, as an advocate for girls in Tech, Avye also received:

Avye also made it onto the prestigious NatWest WISE 100, highlighting women doing incredible work in social enterprise.

In addition to this Girls Into Coding was runner-up in The Merton Best Business Award 2022 (in The Contribution To The Community Category).

What we’re most proud of is the many girls and young women in STEM we’ve inspired to want to continue that passion. Aiza, a regular event attendee, and community member returned as a speaker at one of our events. Chloe is another regular who has now gone on to become a mentor, helping other girls understand 3D printing and design better. Another member of the community, Mariyah, is now working towards being a mentor with the support of more experienced girls who genuinely get a kick out of helping each other succeed. We hope to see Mariyah mentoring at some events in 2023.

Our mission is now to engage at least 1000 girls every year through meaningful hands-on workshops, addressing the pervasive tech gender gap and sparking girls’ interest in tech education early enough that they don’t get held back by negative or sexist stereotypes. Our work continues thanks to our sponsors and partners who understand the benefits of partnering with grassroots organisations for both local and wider communities, and for the corporations themselves.

We’d like to thank all our mentors, guest speakers, sponsors, partners, and supporters, without whom we would not be able to do what we do.

Last but certainly not least, we must thank the girls and their parents for their continued passion and excitement!

Avye

Hi, my name is Avye and I love making, coding, designing, exploring new technology and swimming! This site is about the things I get to experience, discover and enjoy. Welcome to my world!

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