Sharing the WomEng story in Rwanda with UNESCO
For three weeks 120 high school girls from across Africa and the USA were gathered in Gashora, Rwanda to attend a WiSci Camp to teach them skills of the future - STEAM. The new acronym includes science, technology, engineering, art and Maths. I have always maintained that engineering was definitely part art, part science, and part politics. I was honored to be invited by UNESCO to run social entrepreneurship training for these girls.
What is a social entrepreneur? As a social entrepreneur, we see opportunities where there are problems. It was wonderful to share my WomEng journey around developing a global social enterprise. To inspire these girls to think about the “triple bottom line” when it comes to business i.e social, environment and economic impacts of business. To my delight, I found 3 girls from South Africa at the camp who were on our GirlEng program. This year 3000 girls became GirlEngers and represent the future of African Women in Engineering.
Personally, while I was in Rwanda to teach, I learnt so much and was inspired by these young gems, as I am every time I visit GirlEng program across South Africa. To be honest, when I was 16 I was definitely not as inspiring or driven as they are. The future looks bright in the hands of these girls, but it goes beyond the training at the camp from various partners including UNESCO, Intel and GirlUp. It's what happens next that's exciting. In this group we could have the girl who discovered the next big idea to solve health, water, sanitation or any other social issue plaguing our continent through technology and engineering. I'm watching this space closely.