GirlCode partners with Amazon to upskill unemployed women 

GirlCode South Africa has partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to create a free joint learnership training programme targeted at 30 unemployed women for a career in tech and IT. 

Titled GirlCode’s Software Development Learnership, the programme aims to foster and promote female talent in the tech industry. 

 GirlCode partners with Amazon to upskill unemployed women

GirlCode’s Software Development Learnership

The programme kicked on 1 April 2021 and took place in Midrand. Selected participants will undergo a 12-month free programme, attend daily work-simulation sessions held at the GirlCode campus in Johannesburg. 

With a focus on an introduction to cloud-based computing and AWS tools, participants will work on practical projects along with learning valuable insight into how to use relevant tech and tools in the software space. 

During the programme, participants will focus on career skills such as preparing for an interview, insightful advice on navigating salary discussions, guidance on how to develop one’s personal brand along with developing one’s personal brand, and assistance with CVs, covering letters, and learners’ LinkedIn profiles.

According to reports, GirlCode received 50 000 applications for its new programme with only 30 selected to take part. 

GirlCode Chief Executive Officer Zandile Mkhwanazi comments on the vast amount of talent available in SA. 

“The sad reality of this seemingly great outcome is that there are brilliant young minds sitting at home without work and study prospects. Also important is that this in fact means that organisations are forfeiting the potential IP that could be creating innovative solutions for the industry and our country as a result. Given the result of the applications, this is a positive step in the right direction to address the tech skills gap in South Africa when it comes to women software developers. We are excited to work with AWS, as GirlCode aims to upskill 10 million women over the next 10 years. GirlCode will continue seeking more opportunities to empower more girls.”

Providing hands-on experience, the programme has partnered with tech startups to ensure that learners can gain practical experience after they have completed the learnership. 

Employment equality

Linda Siso, Head of Education at AWS South Africa, explains why the cloud computing giant is supporting the initiative of employment equality.

“Recent research shows that 32.2% of South African women were unemployed at the end of 2020, meaning that as a country women are disproportionately facing unemployment. Education and skill development opportunities such as GirlCode’s Software 

Development Learnership are critical to helping to close inequality gaps in our society.”

Read more: New programme offers opportunities for unemployed South Africans
Read more: United Nations launches global competition for food startups and SMEs

Featured image: GirlCode (Supplied)



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