Generation Code

Finalist category: Digital Skills Award


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Digital Skills Award, Winner, 2018

Technical capability, skills and motivation for the next generation.

Developing new skills and sparking an interest in coding, Generation Code allows young people to get creative, develop their computational thinking and coding skills to become better equipped to take advantage of the opportunities in a world that is becoming digital-by-default.

90% of all jobs require digital skills to some degree and the UK needs another 745,000 workers with digital skills in 2017. Young people are expected to make up a third of the global workforce by 2020, but many lack the digital skills to enable them to take advantage of these increasing digital opportunities. Generation Code addresses the lack of skills in computer science in young people, empowering them to become digital creators in an ever-changing global society.

In partnership with Microsoft and UK Youth, Generation Code provides coding opportunities to young people aged 11-19 years old, The national programme trains Code Champions aged 16-25 years old with no coding experience to take the lead on delivering regular coding activities to young people in their area, sparking an interest in code through themed activities that are relevant to their interests, whether that be fashion, sport or space. Using the micro: bit, Generation Code will help 11,760 young people across the UK get creative with code, bringing coding to life as they make all sorts of cool creations, from robots to musical instruments – the possibilities are endless.

According to the Government, an estimated 1.2 million new technical and digitally skilled people are needed by 2022 . Digital creation and computer science are no longer niche skills. Yet despite young people being born “digital natives”, many have remained digital consumers. Young people need to become switched on to digital creation in order to understand the world around them and be an active citizens within an ever changing global society.

Generation Code addresses this need by putting digital skills at the heart of the youth sector. Engaging 5182 young people across the UK since June 2017. Youth organisations taking part are empowered with the technical capability, skills and motivation to provide a digital offering within an informal learning setting for the first time.

Generation Code ensures youth organisations can provide an offer to young people within their service which will increase their digital skills and emotional and social capabilities. Generation Code also provides youth organisations with a new and relevant offering for their local community, drawing in people to their local youth service who may not have been previously connected.

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