Are you aware of Information Technology initiatives created to empower the children and youth of Nigeria? These initiatives aim to harness the power of IT to create the future. All innovation depends on IT. And the youth are integral to future growth and sustainability.
According to a declaration of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), “We recognize that young people are the future workforce and leading creators and earliest adopters of ICTs. They must therefore be empowered as learners, developers, contributors, entrepreneurs and decision-makers”.
Let’s look at some progressive, youth-centred Information Technology initiatives in Nigeria
- CSC Lounge is the web offering developed by young IT professionals to bridge the gap between students and industry. It ensures that students are equipped with hands-on practical experience that will enable them fit properly to the industry.
- Nigerian Association of Computer Science Students (NACOSS) holds the NITTEX (Nigerian IT Talent Exhibition) on July 6, 2011 in Lagos, Nigeria. NACOSS the student professional body representing all computer science students in Nigeria is one of the largest student organizations in Nigeria.
- African Children Cyber Safety Initiative promotes a safe Computing and Internet culture among children and young people in Africa. The African Children Cyber Safety Initiative (ACCSI) was created during the 2009 Children and Young People Online Protection Forum organized by the African Information Security Association (AISA) with a mandate to advance the cause of safe online culture for children and young people in Africa.
- Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) is organizing National Information Technology Competitions for schools and tertiary institutions. The NCS generally recognized as the national platform for the advancement of Computer Science and Information Technology in Nigeria, organizes these programs on an annual basis.
- The IT Entrepreneur program for children is conducted for schools to promote youth and IT entrepreneurship. For the first ever IT Entrepreneur program for children in Nigeria, Jidaw Systems Limited (Mastercomputers) partnered with Grange school. Another program will take place for Command Day Secondary School in June 2011.
Let’s harness the freshness, energy and ideas of the young. We need Nigerian youth to fully realize their capabilities by going beyond Entertainment, Sports and Consumption. Nigerian youth are not satisfied with using BlackBerry, Facebook – the results of ICT. Instead Nigerian youth want to start creating ICT. And it will be done because IT has just started. Nothing has been settled and the Nigerian youth are capable.
DON”T BE AN ONLOOKER. These initiatives need YOU – your time, your presence, your substance. Without YOU the interventions are not sustainable. Your Support (Morally, Financially, etc) is needed to ensure the success of the initiatives.
SPREAD THE NEWS AND ENGAGE. Learn, Participate and Inspire. We encourage you to support and encourage the efforts of children and young people determined to use IT to fulfill their potential, live their dreams and create a better and sustainable future.
“Invest in children: We are either building and strengthening the future OR stealing the future from generations yet unborn” – Jide Awe