Google has announced that it has reached the one million milestone in its digital skills programme for Africa. Google had last April said that it would train as many as one million Africans on digital skills within a year. The company has kept to its promise.
“We have reached our target early, and we have committed ourselves to train even more Africans in digital skills in the coming year,” Google said on Tuesday.
In addition, Google is extending its commitment to the digital skills programme by assisting local communities further in several ways. First, Google will provide offline versions of its online training materials to reach individuals and businesses in low access areas where it is unable to hold physical training sessions. Second, Google will provide offline versions of the content in languages like Hausa, Swahili and IsiZulu.
The digital skills programme offers 89 courses through the online https://digitalskills.withgoogle.com/ portal, and Google works with 14 training partners covering more than 20 countries to offer face to face training. The programme will also be addressing needs for small business owners, who are looking to better understand how to take advantage of the web across Africa. Google will add web-focused skills training for SMEs across Africa as part of this initiative.
Speaking on the development, Google Nigeria Country Manager, Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor, said: “The Web is a driver of economic growth, and is transforming society as a whole. People must be equipped, through training and reskilling to make use of the tools, and take advantage of it for entrepreneurship, employment and e-inclusion.”
According to her, their goal with this and previous web training initiatives is to enable more people across the continent better understand how to leverage the web tools for growth, to give them access to better employment and/or the skills to start their own businesses.
“A digitally skilled Africa is good for everyone – for our economy, for entrepreneurs and individuals. And yes, good for internet companies like Google,” she said.
Growth Engine and Brand Lead, sub-Saharan Africa, Bunmi Banjo, said: “Having one million digitally skilled young people in Africa is good for everyone. If young people have the right skills, they will build businesses, create jobs and boost economic growth across the continent.”
“As we expand this initiative to reach more local areas across the continent, we hope to see more impact in everyday lives of Africans,” Banjo added.