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5 Organizations Focused on Closing the Digital Divide

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With the heightened awareness of the digital divide, which refers to actual or perceived inequalities in access to information and communication technologies, there has been a surge of organizations attempting to bridge the divide by offering workshops, seminars, hackathons and more via in-person and online training.

A major issue within underrepresented communities is lack of awareness; parents and youth are oftentimes unaware of resources that are readily available to them. Check out a list of organizations offering free or low-cost programs in an effort to equip Black youth with an array of technological skills.

Black Girls Code – BGC’s vision is to increase the number of women of color in the digital space by empowering girls of color ages 7 to 17 to become innovators in STEM fields, leaders in their communities, and builders of their own futures through exposure to computer science and technology.

BGC offers a variety of introductory level workshops that include web design, mobile application development, robotics, and game development. They also offer hackathons and summer programs.

Ages: 7-17

Locations: Bay Area, NYC, Miami, Atlanta, Detroit, Memphis, Dallas and Johannesburg, South Africa

For more information on Black Girls Code, check out their website.

Code2040 – CODE2040’s strategy is to provide pathways to educational, professional, and entrepreneurial success in technology to underrepresented minorities, with a particular focus on Blacks and Latinos.

CODE2040 offers an awesome summer Fellows Program for minority computer science and engineering students, which is designed to accelerate students’ success, fast-tracking them to becoming tech leaders.

The program provides students with internships with top tech companies and offers a leadership development curriculum on evenings and weekends.

Ages: College students

Location: Silicon Valley, Calif.

For more information on CODE2040, check out their website.

CodeNow – CodeNow is a nonprofit organization focused on teaching underrepresented youth to code. It offers weekend workshops at local tech companies, where students receive instruction from industry leading software engineers.

CodeNow is one of the only coding organizations that offers pre-work, so the students gain exposure prior to the workshop. Students work in small groups with a specialized curriculum.

Ages: High school students

Locations: New York, Washington, D.C., Miami, and the Bay Area

For more information on CodeNow, check out their website.

Qeyno Labs – Qeyno Labs is a hackathon incubator that harnesses the interests of high-potential youth from low-opportunity settings into STEM career pathways.

Qeyno Labs’ mission is to transform children’s lives through social innovation and technology. The organization understands that exposure has to happen at an early age to shape life outcomes, educational performance and workforce preparation.

Ages: 13-20

Location: Oakland, Calif.

For more information on Qeyno Labs, check out their website.

Iridescent – Iridescent’s mission is to create and deliver science, engineering, and technology education to help underprivileged children develop curiosity, creativity, and persistence.

Iridescent’s programs are family science, curiosity machine, technovation challenge, ethers games, engineering summer camp, and books and physics apps.

Ages: Elementary+

Locations: Studios in Los Angeles and New York and an international reach

For more information on Iridescent, check out their website.



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