As part of the African Union Summit that was held in Kigali in July, the Africa Code Week Women in Tech Community was launched in the presence of Rwandan Minister of Education Dr. Papias Malimba Musafiri at an event hosted by SAP and key partners. This continent-wide network brings together game changers in female ICT education, eager to become role models for girls and women in their respective communities. Partners include: Cape Town Science Centre, kLab, Germany's Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Africa Smart Investments Distribution and Girls in ICT Rwanda.
With millions of African girls still not receiving a formal education -- and UNESCO estimating that gender equality in the ICT sector could open up a global market of USD 50-70 billion -- ICT is increasingly the focus of many empowerment organizations for girls and women across the continent. Last year, Africa Code Week helped to balance gender equality in ICT education with female participation reaching 60% in Tunisia, 56% in South Africa and 50% in Togo. In 2016, the Africa Code Week Women in Tech Community wants to continue encouraging girls and young women to gain ICT skills by fostering knowledge exchange and mentoring for female participants all over Africa.
In another initiative, and for the first time in partnership with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a group of SAP employees recently concluded a number of social sabbatical projects in Kigali during July and August. The SAP Social Sabbatical is a short-term volunteer assignment for SAP employees. The programme assembles international teams to solve business challenges for entrepreneurial and educational organizations in emerging markets, while helping employees strengthen their leadership competencies, cross-industry knowledge and intercultural sensitivity.