The global pandemic Covid-19’s impact on the vulnerable populations of our country is unprecedented, reminding us that the only thing that is constant is change. This year more than ever, we realise the importance of technology in our lives.

With various lockdown restrictions imposed, technology was and still is relevant to allow us to work, transact and to keep us connected.

For GirlCode, the new normal presented a unique opportunity to provide innovative solutions to bridge the digital divide, hence the seventh instalment of the GirlCode Annual Hackathon, dubbed “Hack from Home” will be a virtual hackathon to overcome the Covid-19 challenges.

The event will be held in August to coincide with the Women’s Month celebration.

The objective being to entrench and elevate interest in coding and in turn, afford tertiary students eager to join to the software industry with an opportunity to develop practical skills needed to enter the corporate environment.

GirlCode anticipates hosting participants from all over South Africa who will stand a chance to win prizes ranging from laptops to tablets and a grand prize of R10 000. Individuals may enter the hackathon as part of a group of two and maximum four per group. Registration opened on 1 July and will close on 24 July, 2020. This link can be used to register.

“We are thrilled to host our inaugural virtual hackathon. I encourage participants to think about local solutions that relate to one or more of the UN Sustainable Development Goals within the context of a Covid-19 period,” says GirlCode chairwoman Zandile Mkwanazi. “To build solutions that connect people and drive better productivity. This can be a solution about local deliveries, small businesses serving their communities, women in rural areas selling their beaded work online, the sky is the limit.”

This year’s hackathon Gold Sponsors are Synthesis, Mint and Amazon Web Services (AWS). Royal HaskoningDHV is the Silver Sponsor.