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59,535 girls are encouraged to pursue STEM careers by Tech4Dev.

Tech4Dev, a social change and development initiative has explained that complex challenges facing Nigeria’s business environment can become a thing of the past if adequate investment is made in ensuring literacy in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.

According to Tech4Dev, this development was done with a strong emphasis on balancing the gender divide in STEM-related careers in Africa, Technology.

The co-founder and executive director at Tech4Dev, Oladiwura Oladepo, said she is excited with the overall outcome of the advocacy campaign.

“We are excited about the impact that has been achieved through the Tech-Girls Drive advocacy campaign. Directly reaching 59,535 girls in 15 African countries and impacting more lives is no mean feat. I would like to especially acknowledge the efforts of the Women Techsters Fellows class of 2023 for their input in making the campaign a success,” Oladepo said.

She noted, “We look forward to engaging more partners to do this bigger and better Africa next year”.”

“I believe that with the reach of this advocacy campaign we will inspire change makers across Africa and, more young girls in Africa will be challenged to take up more careers in STEM.”

Blessing Ashi, the women techsters initiative lead at Tech4Dev said “we are proud of the success of the advocacy campaign and we hope that what we have done will serve as a seed that’ll spur the girls into thinking of taking up careers in STEM.”

Tech4Dev had previously on February 11, 2022, during the commemoration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science visited five all-girls secondary schools in Lagos where they sensitized over 4,000 girls on the need for careers in STEM while also informing a total of 192 young girls during a two-day talk session on the commemoration of the International Girls in ICT Day on April 28, 2022.

A 2021 UNESCO science report revealed that Sub-Saharan African countries account for about 28 percent of women in STEM careers while the global average of women in STEM stands at 30 percent. Although women’s enrolment in STEM-related courses is increasing, it’s still a long way to the perceived goal which is balancing the gulf.

The Tech-Girls Drive is a Nigerian and African-wide onsite grassroots advocacy campaign effort under Tech4Dev’s flagship program – The Women Techsters initiative. It is designed to create awareness and spur the interest of young girls between the ages of 8 to twenty to take up careers in STEM. It serves as an initial touch point for young girls who will eventually participate in Africa’s growing technology ecosystem.

The Tech-Girls Drive advocacy campaign, which launched on October 11, 2022, the day designated by the United Nations as International Day of the Girl Child, lasted through November 4, 2022.

“The campaign involved visits various primary, junior, and senior secondary schools throughout the 36 states of Nigeria, including the Federal Capital Territory, as well as across 14 other African countries, including Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, Ethiopia, South Africa, Egypt, Mozambique, Madagascar, Tanzania, Algeria, Sudan, Angola, DR Congo, and Morocco,” Tech4Dev said in a statement.

“A total of 327 schools and 56 cities were visited in 15 African countries while the advocacy campaign also engaged young girls and teenagers in 45 local community centres which include churches and orphanages,” the initiative noted.

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