United Way’s CODEanagan program helps youth with more than technology

More than just tech

The United Way’s CODEanagan program is helping youth with more than just technology skills.

Over the past two weeks, United Way Southern Interior BC (SIBC), along with community partners Accelerate Okanagan and Okanagan College, delivered CODEanagan bootcamps virtually to youth between 13 to 26 years old.

Over the course of two weeks, students were introduced to the world of coding, websites, network design and cyber security.

CODEanagan is an ongoing tech education program for local youth who may traditionally experience barriers to learning due to cost, accessibility or education format.

Supported by the RBC Future Launch Foundation and Coast Capital Savings Community Investment for Youth, the program has grown beyond Kelowna since Covid forced it to go virtual.

As a result, this spring’s workshop series included youth from the North and South Okanagan, the Kootenays and Kamloops.

The program also offers virtual field trips to local tech companies and ongoing mentorship to inspire them to explore career opportunities in the tech sector.

“At United Way, we are passionate about helping youth reach their potential & explore new possibilities,” said Jude Brunt, Manager of Events & Special Projects at United Way SIBC.

“COVID-19 has affected youth dramatically and, for many young people, making connections like this is not so easy right now. They don’t realize the scope of career opportunities available to them when they channel their video game skills and keyboard mastery in new directions. That’s where CODEanagan offers inspiration and opens doors," Brunt added.

The next series of CODEanagan bootcamps is planned for Fall 2021.

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