Empowering under-resourced youth
to enter the tech economy locally and globally.
Project C is a ministry under Youth Global Network (YGN), aim to provide alternative pathways for less resourceful youth to gain more technology education, employment opportunities and social integration through innovative computer coding and community mentoring programs.
The Tech Economy
The economy in the 21st century is dominated by technology. Almost every growing sector of the economy is connected to the use of computers, the internet or social media, whether it is the content (product or service), communication, marketing, networking, distribution or management.
The Digital Divide
The digital divide is traditionally considered to be the gap between those who have access to computers or internet services, and those who do not. But as the global internet penetration rate increases rapidly, access is becoming less of an issue. One major issue is that a large population of users are mere consumers in ICT who end up paying relatively more to use the equipment and services, while only a small elite group of users are creators benefiting from the wealth in the industry.
The Social Divide
This exacerbates the gap between the rich and the poor, those who have resources and those who don’t, those who have upward social mobility and those who don’t. This is also what many have called the social divide.
Bridging the Divides
We believe that pumping resources into under-resourced communities would not halt the widening social and digital divides. To bridge the gaps, we need to bring the resourceful and under-resourced groups together to solve problems together.
In the summer of 2017 at Google’s headquarter in Silicon Valley, a team of five middle school students from a Hong Kong local school won the Grand Prize for making an innovative mobile app, beating more than 1,100 other teams worldwide to the award. That same year, one of our team members went into a local classroom of Grade 8 students from less privileged backgrounds and found that there were students who did not know how to type the capital A on the keyboard.
That is the digital divide in our city, and around the world. And with a GDP per capita higher than Switzerland, Hong Kong’s poverty rate is over 20% in 2019, creating a disparity between the rich and the poor in this city among the worst in developed societies.
In the past few years, Project C has brought coding curriculum to under-resourced schools, engaged their students with resourceful mentors, trained a few high school graduates in the summer months to become junior programmers getting real jobs. But this is just the beginning of our endeavor to bridge the social and digital divides.