Did you know that a report released by the European Commission reveals that 44% of Europeans do not have basic digital skills? With 9 out of 10 jobs in the future requiring this, Europe could be facing a massive digital skills gap.
Committed to increasing digital literacy across Europe is what sparked the creation Meet and Code in 2017, with the aim to ignite interest into the world of technology and coding and empower youth to shape their digital future. Fast forward a few years later and amidst the coronavirus pandemic, Meet and Code continues to connect and engage with children and youth.
Our favourite digital skills youth initiative turns five
Now in its fifth year, Meet and Code 2021 returns with registrations now open for local non-profits across Europe to submit their coding event concepts for ages of 8 and 24 and could receive up to 500 euros in funding.
Specially aligned to EU Code Week in October, Meet and Code will show it’s support with digital coding events. “Since the beginning of time, humans have created with stone, iron, paper and pencil. Now we live in a different era where we mould our world in code. During Code Week we want to give everyone the opportunity to discover coding and have fun with it,” says Alessandro Bogliolo, EU Code Week Ambassadors Coordinator.
Celebrating EU Code Week, Fabrizia Benini, Deputy Director of Digital Transformation at the European Commission says, “In October, EU Code Week will again celebrate creativity, problem solving and innovation and bring coding to millions of young people in Europe and beyond. A special focus will be placed on reaching schools. And to empower as many young people as possible, EU Code Week collaborates with organizations such as Meet and Code.”
Here’s five ways our tech-savvy youth can shape Europe’s future
Digital technologies are a staple in everyday life – they are also transforming European schools and classrooms. Today’s kids need digital skills to be ready for the future. The 21st-century is centred around computational technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR), Blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT) and Robotics – coding is one way to expose youth to STEM-based topics from an early age so that they can develop skills and expertise to fulfil their professional and personal aspirations.
1. Code teaches programming fundamentals and formal logic. At its core, children learn how to break down a problem into essential elements and create a solution. Coding sharpens problem-solving and increases focus.
2. Coding prepares kids for an increasingly technology-based future. Many jobs involve understanding the limitations and capabilities of code from design to e-commerce, architecture, and data science.
3. In a world that is constantly asking us to adapt to new technologies and digital innovations, code provides an empowering skillset and develops confidence.
4. Children who learn how to code will be better able to understand how the world around them works because code is used in everyday life.
5. Code is one of the most widely used languages in the world. If a child can learn computational thinking and design patterns while learning to code, they will be able to code in any coding language.
Join Meet and Code and the founding partners SAP, Haus des Stiftens gGmbH, TechSoup Europe with the respective country partners of the TechSoup Europe network as they celebrate five magic years of coding impact! In 2020, the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI) joined as a European partner, and Haus des Stiftens gGmbH is responsible for the initiative. Now in its fifth year, Meet and Code 2021 registrations are open for local non-profits across Europe to submit their coding event concepts
As we know, coding is one of the many digital tools that can help change the world. Are you feeling inspired? To find out more about Meet and Code, or to apply for funding and get involved visit www.meet-and-code.org or connect on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook using #SAP4Good #meetandcode and #codeEU.