InnovateHer inspires girls across the North West to consider digital careers

InnovateHer is a Liverpool-based national initiative which launched in 26 schools across the North West in 2018 and now has grown the number of schools in the region to 55. Tony McDonough reports

Innovate Her
Jo Morfee and Chelsea Slater, founders of Innovate Her

 

A Liverpool-based social enterprise that works with schools to encourage more girls to consider careers in technology is pledging to reach more than 1,000 girls by 2020.

InnovateHer is a national initiative which launched in 26 schools across the North West in 2018. Now it has grown the number of schools in the North West to 55 and will deliver an eight-week after-school programme in the region.

It has teamed up with Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and Greater Manchester Combined Authority, headed by Metro Mayors Steve Rotheram and Andy Burnham.

The programme is designed to encourage greater equality and diversity in technical roles by giving girls aged 12-16 access to the skills, self-belief and confidence to pursue a career in technology.

Leading employers

InnovateHer has worked with more than 240 girls in 12 schools to date, enabling them to interact with leading employers and industry role models, alongside providing careers coaching. Specialising in technical education for girls, the company is on a mission to make a significant impact on gender inequality in tech globally.

Other private sector partners such as Co-op Digital and Code ComputerLove, will assist the InnovateHer team in delivering the programme in a wide range of schools across the North West.

The InnovateHer team is simultaneously working with digital and tech companies through a membership and consultancy offer, to create more inclusive workplaces for the next generation to work within.

Gender gap

Jo Morfee, co-founder of InnovateHer, said: “It’s critical that young people are given the opportunity to learn key digital skills from an early age, as the majority of roles now require digital skills. We also have a gender gap in the industry – just 20% of tech roles in the North West are taken by women.

That’s why we’re on a mission to change the narrative, because we believe that everyone, regardless of background or identity, should be given the opportunity to follow the path that they choose.

In the Liverpool city region, the programme has been backed by Mr Rotheram and will reach six schools by 2020, working with one school in each borough. The schools will have a choice of themes to pick from; Web Development, Tech for Good and Gaming, and students will have the opportunity to showcase their work at The Big Bang Festival in July.

InnovateHer is currently seeking industry mentors to help lead the programme, and business partners to help with delivery. Get in touch with the team if you’d like to get involved by clicking here.

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