GirlCode to host first virtual hackathon

Johannesburg – Non-profit organisation GirlCode will be holding a virtual hackathon inviting young women to create software solutions to help overcome Covid-19 challenges.

The event will be held in August to coincide with the Women’s Month celebrations.

While this is the seventh annual hackathon, it will be its first virtual hackathon. This instalment of the GirlCode Annual Hackathon, dubbed ‘Hack from Home’, is meant to entrench and elevate interest in coding. It will also provide tertiary students who want to join the software industry an opportunity to develop practical skills required to enter the corporate environment.

In a statement the organisation said: “The new normal presents a unique opportunity to provide innovative solutions to bridge the digital divide, hence the seventh instalment of the hackathon will be virtual.” 

GirlCode anticipates hosting participants from all over South Africa, who stand a chance to win prizes ranging from laptops to tablets, and a grand prize of R10 000. 

GirlCode chairperson Zandile Mkwanazi says they are thrilled to host the inaugural virtual hackathon.

“I encourage participants to think about local solutions that relate to one or more of the UN Sustainable Development Goals within the context of a Covid-19 period, to build solutions that connect people and drive better productivity. This can be a solution about local deliveries, small businesses serving their communities, women in rural areas selling their beaded work online, the sky is the limit,” Mkwanazi says.

The themes for the hackathon will be social good and Covid-19. Participants will work on ideas and solutions to help people overcome the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Participants also need to be women residing in South Africa who are college or university students, recent graduates, or have coding experience of less than two years; and be aged at least 18 years to enter.

Individuals may enter the hackathon as part of a group of two and a maximum of four per group. Registration is open and will close on 24 July. Those interested can use the link https://girlcode.devpost.com/ to register.

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