UNESCO Director-General inspects 'Girls Can Code' Project

The Director General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), Madam Audrey Azoulay, Wednesday visited the Ghana India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence (AITI-KACE) in ICT in Accra to inspect some of their projects.

She was at the centre to inspect and witness a presentation of web and mobile solutions developed by the beneficiaries of the Girl Can Code Project, which is being implemented by the centre.

The Girls Can Code Project is a special initiative by UNESCO-IFAP, HASCA and AITI-KACE to develop the interest of girls to take up careers in information and communication technology (ICT) and build their capacity to solve local community challenges with Information Technology.

The main goal of the initiative is to achieve equitable access to information and knowledge which is crucial for the realization of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The two-year project is to train three hundred (300) girls and twenty (20) teachers from ten (10) Junior High Schools (JHSs) across the country in computer programming and entrepreneurship.

Madam Azoulay also inspected an exhibition centre put together by the beneficiaries of the Girls Can Code Project as well as interacting with the girls.

In his welcome address, the Director General of AITI-KACE, Mr Kwasi Adu-Gyan, said the centre has been at the forefront in championing the agenda of mainstreaming gender in the digital space of Ghana, particularly by developing and nurturing the capacity of girls in the field of ICT.

He said the centre has so far designed and implemented initiatives such as the Girls Can Code Project, Girls in ICT, Robotics for Junior High School girls, and UNESCO Youth Mobile, all aimed at equipping girls with knowledge in the ICT world.

According to him, the centre is reactivating centres of excellence in Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo Region and Bolgatanga in the Upper East Region to serve the northern and middle belts of the country.

“A unique feature of these centres is one of diversity through the establishment of enterprise development hubs to nurture and grow small and medium scale enterprises,” Mr Adu-Gyan said.

He also served notice of the Centre’s readiness to partner UNESCO in areas that “will aid in bridging the digital divide, create jobs and contribute our quota towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

” He said AITI-KACe has positioned itself to share in the dream of Global Education Agenda 2030 with particular emphasis on the education sector vision of ensuring an inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong opportunities for all.

Mr Adu-Gyan said as part of efforts to strategically positioned the centre as the ICT hub in the sub-region, it has intensified partnerships with global organisations such as the Centre for Development of Advance Computing (C-DAC) under the Ministry of Information Technology and Electronics of the government of India.

He further explained that the centre is also partnering CISCO Corporation of the United States, ISACA and the Indian Institute of Technology.

Similarly, Mr Adu-Gyan explained, the government of India through the Ministry of External Affairs has selected the centre as a regional hub for eITEC programmes in Big Data Analytics and High Performance Computing in the ECOWAS Region.

He commended the Ghana Education Service, HACSA, Dreamoval Foundation, Soronko Solutions and all other stakeholders whose contributions have made the Girls Can Code Project a success.

BY: Zadok K. Gyesi