WATCH | These coders are closing the gender gap in the tech world

Baratang Miya had the odds stacked against her. As a black child growing up in South Africa, she was denied the quality education that every kid deserves.

It was only when Miya got to university that she used a computer for the first time. She soon realised the importance of technical knowledge in the workplace. So, she taught herself how to code.

In 2003, Miya used her expertise to found the non-profit GirlHype. Inviting girls into the computing space, she’s equipping them with the tools and education she never had.

“My girls are here to take their rightful place in the world of tech,” Miya says.

In the top 10 global technology companies, women only fill 19% of industry-related jobs. GirlHype offers free training in programming, coding, and app development, paving the future for a generation of women in STEM.

Miya’s project offers kids at junior and high school level a fair chance at becoming proficient in a range of coding languages. “They can keep on thriving where technology keeps evolving,” Miya says.

To broaden opportunities, people with an affiliation to a school or related organisation can start a GirlHype Coder Club.

GirlHype also offers an online programme in collaboration with Technovation to teach young women how to build an app to confront issues in local communities.

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So far, Miya has helped more than 900 000 young women excel in computer science.

“My dream is to have every child of South Africa knowing how to code,” she says. Donations support Miya in her efforts to close the gender gap and provide opportunities to girls.

“I encourage all my students to use their knowledge to address social ills,” she says.

With her strong desire to develop young women into talented entrepreneurs, Miya is coding the way to equality.