Global Initiatives

Thousands of Nigerian Girls to Benefit from Ed Tech and 3D Printing


Nigerian girls get a demonstration of 3D printing from the Youth for Technology Foundation.

The Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) plans to train 6,000 out-of-school girls in Nigeria in cutting-edge, in-demand technology skills.

The digital skills training in 3D printing will occur at YTF digital hubs in Nigeria. Training by YTF master trainers will involve female STEM professionals, industry experts and entrepreneurs as mentors. The training will also incorporate partnerships with grassroots organizations that will provide education on sexual and reproductive health rights. The girls — many of them survivors or potential victims of human trafficking — will also learn about local businesses that provide apprenticeships for young people.

The training will focus on 3D printing skills using human-centered innovation principles, a problem-based approach to designing and creating products.

Girls who take this training will earn a trade certification, gain employment-ready skills and benefit from mentorship in employment and entrepreneurial settings, according to a news release.

To help boost each girl’s entrepreneurship opportunities, the training includes basic literacy and numerical lessons, financial inclusion education, business capabilities training, global access to steady employment through online marketplaces and leadership and entrepreneurship skills.

“Every day, we see first hand that technology levels the playing field for girls,” said Njideka Harry, YTF president and CEO, in a prepared statement. “Technology provides equal access to in-demand 21st century jobs. Our commitment at [the Clinton Global Initiative] includes training in 3D printing, an industry forecasted to grow as much as $30 billion by 2025. We believe this is a powerful catalyst for girls to create their own online businesses to market their digital skills or products, access employment globally, escape poverty and experience true financial freedom.”

YTF’s core focus is leveraging the power of technology to educate and lift up impoverished girls, aiming to break the cycle of poverty. YTF’s work is supplemented by local partnerships with the private and public sectors, including government, academia, foundations, social service agencies and local management committees.

Youth for Technology Foundation is an international nonprofit, citizen-sector organization founded in 2000. YTF partners with communities in the developing world and with low-income communities in the United States. YTF has a strong track record of delivering technology, education, employment and entrepreneurship programs for marginalized youth and women.

YTF is presenting its Nigeria plan at the 2016 Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting, which started Monday and continues through Wednesday. YTF’s Nigeria program is slated to launch in the first half of 2017.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at [email protected].