ICT provider, Huawei Technologies has partnered with the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Authority to set up a computer lab at Kwale Girls High School.

Speaking when he donated 25 laptops worth Ksh1 million, Adam Lane, Senior Director of Public Affairs at Huawei Technologies said the initiative was in support of the Digital Literacy Programme.

“We want to provide students with devices so they can access the internet and improve their education, and provide IT skills to them to increase their chances of employability. This gels very well with the core concepts of the Government’s Digital Literacy Programme and Ajira Digital programme” said Mr. Lane.

Ajira Digital programme is a multi-sectoral Government initiative that aims to introduce young people in Kenya to online work and provide the tools, training and mentorship needed for them to work and earn an income through online work.

“As a matter of fact we started by offering training for 30 underprivileged form four leavers through our Digital Skills for Life programme which is designed to equip underprivileged but deserving youth with various skills that will be relevant in the Kenyan ICT sector”, said Mr. Lane. “Now those students are here today helping train the Kwale girls on how to use the computers and the internet, as well as inspire them for their future”.

The initiative that took place as part of the Connected Summit 2017, also received a boost from Avanti, the broadband services group through installation of satellite internet connection for the entire school.

ICT is currently considered a key driver of Kenya’s economic and social development. However, country’s quest to deliver on its potential as Africa’s Silicon Savannah will only be realized through rapidly building a skilled workforce of ICT professionals including graduates and those who were unable to attend higher education.

“For our youth to be empowered and economically engaged we need concerted efforts from both public and private sector; it is important that all stakeholders pull resources and capacity together for greater impact and long term results,” said Mr. Robert Mugo, Ag. CEO of ICT Authority.

Young people aged between 18-34 years old constitute more than a third of the entire population, while 80 percent of Kenyans are less than 35 years old, this youth bulge presents enormous socio-economic opportunities through harnessing of their skills.