In 2012, Women In Technology Uganda (WITU) was founded with a vision of closing the technological gender gap in Uganda. Since then, WITU has worked with young women and girls around the country offering short courses in various STEM and entrepreneurship skills.
In her years of existence and working with young women from underserved communities, WITU found that there was a great number of young women who had dropped out of school despite having obtained good grades at senior six examinations, mainly due to financial challenges. On the other hand, the private sector in Uganda and across the globe has seen an increase in demand for competent computer science skilled professionals. The high numbers of companies looking for qualified individuals, short supply of STEM talent, high gender gap in STEM and high numbers of young women dropouts that were found, coupled with the desire to go back to school compelled us to start WITI. Our desire is to be a direct link between demand for female tech talent and fulfillment of this demand by training a new generation of qualified, zealous and enterprisingyoung women ready to tackle today and tomorrow’s STEM needs.
Establishment of Women’s Institute of Technology and Innovation, WITI
The Women’s Institute of Technology and Innovation was founded to promote Technological gender equality and the economic empowerment of youth, especially girls and women, by encouraging greater youth participation in STEM fields and actively contributing to the budding STEM innovation and entrepreneurship sectors in Africa. The institute was founded on the pillar; Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. For every 10 Men in STEM, there are less than 4 women and by the time the 4 are in their 5th year of their career, many have left to take care of home duties. If we had more women leading at the forefront of technological innovation, we believe there will be greater social and economic development leading to reduced poverty, and gender based violence. Our work is addressing exactly this for women and girls across Uganda.