Interviews Opinion Society Technology Trends

We want women to be given a voice in the IT ecosystem – Youth Johnson



Youth Johnson,  the convener of StartHub Women in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, a community of young women championing the visibility of women in our society through technology and entrepreneurship talks about the impact of technology in the lives of women in the state, their interventionist projects in schools for kids and the challenge of accessing public schools.Anthony Nwosu captures this in an exclusive interview for Tech and Biz News Ng

Tell us about your organization – StartHub Women? 

Starthub Women is a not-for-profit initiative of Start Innovation Hub Technology Foundation. It was founded in July 2018 at Start Innovation Hub as a community of young women using technology and entrepreneurship to champion the visibility of women in the society. We envision a community where women are proportionally represented as technical leaders, executives, founders, VCs, board members and software engineers.We do not only encourage women to start up faster in technology entrepreneurship, but also support the growth of women that are already in tech.

Do you think that Starthub Women have made an impact on the lives of women in the state?

Well, I am not assessing  myself, but I believe that we are trying. We are the very first that is focusing on women and empowering them to use  technology or information technology. The role of women can’t be over emphasized in the society. We believe that women can strongly be part of the new narrative which is technology.  Yes, we  are making strides in the ecosystem, we have created kids coding program during the holiday periods and parents are impressed on how we have  been able to expose the kids to the nitty gritty of computing. Having started the kids coding program, the responses are reassuring by the parents and the kids. Our kids program is one of the most effective in the region and with this; we can say that we have created an impact in the society.

How is your kids coding program and what is the level of acceptance in a state like Akwa Ibom?

The response has been impressive and overwhelming; this is with the Africa Code week. Our success stories in the holiday program have encouraged us over these past two years that we established. The children are overwhelmed and overjoyed. The kids would come to us and tell us that they will want to learn more about coding. One girl that was among those that we were teaching coding came and told me “Madam, we didn’t know that coding is this interesting”, this is the level of recognition.  Our holiday program is so accepted in Uyo that top government functionaries bring their kids to learn coding and computing. We have also the Africa Code week here, built relationships with selected schools and they have shown promise. Note, we didn’t only partner with schools in urban area we engaged the schools in rural areas also. These schools in rural areas have shown tremendous promises.

How has your engagement with public schools?

Well, accessing public schools for partnership is a bit challenging because of various factors such as bottlenecks and access to computer labs. It was easier for us to work with private schools but we came to the realization that majority of the children are in public schools and these public schools do not have computer labs and computing program. This we are trying to change by our interventionist program for these kids. We strongly believe in Starthub Women that women and children must be equipped in the area of IT , this  would prepare them for the 4th industrial revolution. Accessing public schools are challenging though talents and children with fantastic ideas are in public school but access is an issue.

StartHub Women as a project, what is it about?

We are just a community of women in Start Innovation Hub, we started last year and we want women to know and appreciate technology. We came about this when companies write us that they want coders and when we source coders we realize that women are just less than ten percent of those that are given to clients. StartHub Women are dedicated to changing this narrative and making women love technology.  We want women to be given a voice in the information technology ecosystem; we want them to be visible and impactful. That is our critical mission. Ours is to start a community of women that loves IT and code

Are women getting interested in this project?

The number of women in the hub has been on the increase since we started. We also deploy them to go implement STEM curriculum in schools.. We in startup Women, We strongly believe that women’s role in life transformation using technology is vital.  We also encourage women to incorporate technology in whatever they are doing. Let’s take, for instance, if you make hats, we expose you to digital marketing tools and how to leverage various online platforms for visibility, these women want to learn and they are doing great. 

What are the challenges that you are facing?

Well, funding has always been an issue for us, we are strictly a private venture and we have limitations on what we can do, though we would want to reach more in terms of empowerment and capacity building. We have smart kids that are good in computing, if we can nurture these kids, they would go a long way, we also have seen women in the state and region that have great products but do not know how to make these visible. We have been able to bring many women on board as coders, we have thought somehow to code and there are many success stories, we have also made a whole lot of other women how to integrate IT in their business. We would love to do more, but we are incapacitated by funding. We want to reach out to rural schools, Girls’ schools and also impact in the lives of these kids by giving them the desired exposure. Also, there should be policies by the government to ensure that women are impacted.  We would want to work more with these public schools, but the resources are what I don’t have and it is heartbreaking.

Do you think that kids in public schools can compete and grasp this IT concept? 

There are smart kids out there and I have seen them in public schools and these kids don’t have the opportunity because there are no facilities to take them to a new level. How I wish there are facilities in these public schools, we can work or partner with government on what to do in these public schools. This is in the area of IT and how these kids can benefit from the intervention program we are offering in the state.  The scratch education that we have in place, it has exposed us to the potentialities of kids in the state, though private schools have put it in their curriculum and it is a year in year out thing but unfortunately the public school is a challenge. Accessing them is a big challenge and funding greater challenge. 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may also like

Business Economy Finance Fintech

Fintechs should develop products that address the exact needs of their customers (By Mike Cook)


All around the world businesses are pulling out the stops to achieve growth in what can best be described as challenging economic conditions. Africa is no exception. The continent has long been recognised for its immense potential, and as such businesses across sectors are investing heavily into the continent. Advancements in technology make serving the unbanked and underserved populations in Africa more viable than ever before. However, that does not mean growth comes easily. It is a hyper competitive and complex environment where genuinely understanding your customer is key to growth.

Even with this textbook understanding, there is a strong urge to take the “build it and they will come” approach because we can get caught up in our own technology and view problems from our frame of reference while ignoring the customer. This is typified in the African market where we see multiple shiny apps being dropped across markets…

Read More
Business Technology Technology Trends

Canon’s SELPHY series of compact photo printers celebrates 20th anniversary


Canon Inc. ( announced today that its SELPHY series of compact photo printers, which enables users to easily print high-quality photos and continues to offer a wide range of ways to enjoy photo printing, will celebrate its 20th  anniversary in 2024.

The SELPHY series was created in 2004 in response to heightened demand for photo prints due to the rapid spread of digital cameras in the early 2000s. As of April 2024, the SELPHY series has launched 31 products1 and sold a combined total of more than 17 million units2 worldwide.

The name SELPHY, a combination of “self” and “photography,” was given to convey Canon’s hope that easily printing photos on one’s own would allow people to experience new ways of enjoying photography. SELPHY printers produce photo prints that possess both high-quality and excellent durability through the adoption of a dye sublimation printing process, in which ink…

Read More
Business Economy

NASENI, NIPSS To Collaborate On Enhancing Digital Economy, Job Creation* 

The National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) and the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Plateau State are set to collaborate on enhancing Nigeria’s digital economy footprints, empowering and creating jobs for millions of youths.
The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO),  NASENI, Mr. Khalil Suleiman Halilu, disclosed this while welcoming participants of the Senior Executive Course (SEC) 46 of NIPSS who were at the Agency on Strategic Institution Study tour on Monday, 15th April, 2024.
Halilu said he was elated that NASENI was identified as one of the federal government’s agencies that have all it takes to empower and create job opportunities for Nigerian youths, and make the country self-reliant in
manufacturing and digital economy.
Halilu said strengthening the capacity of key stakeholders in Nigeria to access, adopt and scale up technologies is an…

Read More
Business Education

Nugi Technologies CEO, Austin Ugi, Champions Education Access Across Nigeria and Beyond



Austin Ugi, CEO of Nugi Technologies, asserts that education is the beacon of hope that can illuminate the future of our continent. As a corporate responsibility, Nugi Technologies remains committed to extending educational opportunities to children nationwide.

“I am passionate about ensuring every out-of-school child can return to the classroom,” expressed Austin Ugi. “Last month, with the incredible support of my tight-knit community, we made it possible for 383 children to continue their education.”

Ugi emphasized that this endeavor is only the beginning, with plans to sustain these programs year-round. Collaborating with Artycare Initiative and Happy Feet For Kidz Foundation, they have already impacted over 10,000 schoolchildren by providing essential resources such as footwear, uniforms, textbooks, and covering school fees.May be an image of 1 person and beard

The driving force behind Ugi’s mission is personal. Recalling the challenges he faced…

Read More
Business Economy News Opinion Software




UGI AUGUSTINE, CEO of NUGITECH, a pioneering IT firm originating from Cross River and known for its widespread deployment of innovative solutions nationally and internationally, has shared insights into the company’s transformative journey.

Recalling the remarkable progress NUGITECH has achieved over the years, UGI AUGUSTINE emphasized the significance of continuous growth and learning. “Success isn’t merely measured by our accomplishments, but by our capacity to evolve, learn, and navigate towards our future goals,” remarked AUGUSTINE.

AUGUSTINE further highlighted the pivotal role of teamwork in NUGITECH’s success trajectory. “In our pursuit of excellence, collaboration has been paramount. Sustainable success necessitates the amalgamation of diverse talents, humble leadership, and a culture of mutual learning,” he noted.

Concluding on a note of gratitude, AUGUSTINE credited the unwavering dedication of NUGITECH’s team for the company’s expansion from a singular entity to a conglomerate overseeing multiple ventures. “Our team’s relentless…

Read More
Business Economy Energy

Introducing the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Pro & DELTA 2 Max: The Ultimate Energy Partners to Power Through Loadshedding


EcoFlow (, a leading eco-friendly energy solutions company, today launched the RIVER 2 Pro and DELTA 2 Max in South Africa. Featuring an upgraded capacity and faster charging, the RIVER 2 Pro is the best portable power station within stage 6 loadshedding. DELTA 2 Max has a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) transfer time of 20ms and a capacity of 2048Wh, making it an ideal power ally for whole-home comfort.

“As loadshedding continues to grow, the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Pro and DELTA 2 Max ensure our consumers have access to a simple, flexible and reliable energy source wherever and whenever they should need it,” said Bradley Chetty, B2C Sales Director at EcoFlow South Africa. “We are proud to bring more lifestyle solutions to the market. EcoFlow is committed to making life better through meaningful innovation.”

RIVER 2 Pro, the Best Portable Power Station within Stage 6 Loadshedding

Charge Faster and…

Read More
Business Culture Economy Tourism Travels




From childhood, we’ve been ingrained with the belief that foreign-made goods and businesses outshine our own in Africa. Consequently, “Made in Ghana” labels are rare, as even Ghanaian businesses opt for branding their products as “Made in China” or “Made in US”.

But how can our economies flourish if we neglect our own creations? Take the example of Air Peace, shaking up the Lagos-London market with competitive pricing, compelling giants like British Airways to slash fares.

Now is the time for Nigerians to rally behind Air Peace and shun foreign airlines that overcharge us. Consider the countless Nigerians flying from Lagos or Abuja to London daily—imagine the revenue they generate for foreign carriers. The same applies in Ghana; let’s envision…

Read More
Business Government International

AirPeace Faces Challenges in Competitive Lagos – London Route



In the bustling international air travel scene out of Nigeria, Flyairpeace, the latest entrant into the Lagos – London route, finds itself in the midst of stiff competition. This route, known for its high traffic volume, has attracted the attention of major players, unwilling to yield market share to the newcomer, especially amidst concerns over shark-infested waters.

The ongoing price war initiated by established international airlines is expected to persist, posing significant challenges for Airpeace. While the airline may lack the financial muscle to sustain such a battle, experts caution against engaging in a futile contest where victory seems improbable.

Instead, Airpeace is urged to capitalize on its unique strengths, such as offering exceptional in-flight cuisines, minimizing flight delays, providing superior customer service, facilitating hotel-to-airport transfers, and implementing localized frequent flyer promotions. These strategies could help endear the airline to Nigerian travelers along this route.

Furthermore, there are calls for government intervention…

Read More