Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

Digital Inclusion

Podcast: Blessing Abeng on digital skills for Africa's youth

This is a special crossover podcast episode between the Connecting Africa Podcast and Africa Tech Radio.

Africa Tech Radio Host Anthony Ibe joined Connecting Africa Editor Paula Gilbert in Nairobi, Kenya, to speak to Ingressive for Good Co-Founder Blessing Abeng about digital skills development in Africa.

Abeng shared the story of how Ingressive for Good came about and the work it is doing to train young Africans in digital skills and help them find work.

"Less than three years down the line we have trained 132,000 people and placed thousands of them in jobs as well," she told the podcast.

She talked about how to grow the tech ecosystem and how to partner with global companies to push the skills agenda forward.

"Founders always think that the biggest problem that he or she has is money, but then they get the money and realize, oops I need tech talent to make this work. One of the consistent things that we have found out is it's not that people don't want to be tech talents, they just don't have the resources to invest in themselves to become the kind of tech talents that other founders or investors need," Abeng explained.

"So we decided to breach that gap and in doing that we also wanted to focus on helping the youth increase their earning power, because we know that tech pays two times to five times more than other industries," she added.

The discussion then moved to the tech skills gap when it comes to gender and how to empower more women to enter the space.

"The beautiful thing about tech is it's a leveler, so we can use tech as an opportunity and that is how we saw it. We decided we were going to launch female-focused programs and that is when we started our 1,000 Women in X Program. People would tell us that women don't apply for opportunities so we said, 'No, we are going to do this differently,' so we did and we really listened, and by listening, it helped us figure out how women want to be spoken to," Abeng explained

"Most times when you put an opportunity out there it sounds like a competition. Some people don't want competition, they just want to learn. So, we spoke to [women] and explained to them this is going to be community driven, no one is chasing you, you are only in competition with yourself," she added.

Abeng's advice for budding tech talent: "I think the hardest thing is to start, so just start. Prioritize progress over perfection," she concluded.

— Paula Gilbert, Editor, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub


Ilara Health aims to improve quality of care in Kenya

Kenyan healthtech startup Ilara Health aspires to improve the quality of care in the country's clinics by providing equipment financing and digitizing facilities with its software.


Orange opens digital center in Guinea-Bissau

Pan-African operator Orange has opened an Orange Digital Center (ODC) in Guinea-Bissau.

More Innovation hub

Latest video

More videos

Partner perspectives

All Partner Perspectives

Sponsored video

More videos

Follow us on X

Industry announcements

More Industry announcements

Upcoming events

Cyber Revolution Summit
August 9, 2024
Gaborone, Botswana
Africa Tech Festival 2024
November 12-14, 2024
Cape Town, South Africa
More Upcoming events

Africa Tech Perspectives


Uber's Marjorie Saint-Lot on inclusion and sustainability in Africa

Uber's Country Manager for Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire, Marjorie Saint-Lot, shares how the ride-hailing company is approaching public-private partnerships, environmentally friendly initiatives and gender inclusion in Africa.


The 100 most influential African leaders in 2023

A new report from Africa Tech Festival and Connecting Africa puts a spotlight on the top 100 African leaders in the telecoms and technology sector in 2023.


Deep dive into East Africa's tech startup ecosystem

New survey reveals a lack of access to investors, reliance on international VCs and global recession trends as the biggest barriers for East African tech startups to access funds.

More Africa Tech perspectives

Guest Perspectives


Leadership Lessons: The importance of mentorship for career growth

By Nollie Maoto

Nollie Maoto, First Rand Group's compliance chief data and analytics officer and Africa Tech Festival Leadership Council member, reflects on the importance of mentorship for career growth for African women in data analytics.


Omdia View: May 2024

By Omdia Analysts

May 2024's telecoms highlights in the Middle East and Africa included African 5G subscriptions surpassing 5 million, growth from SpaceX's satellite Internet service Starlink, and a major fiber partnership in the Middle East and North Africa.

More Guest Perspectives

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign Up
Tag id test-002