Abisoye Ajayi-Akinfolarin is a social impact entrepreneur who facilitates opportunities for vulnerable young girls in Nigeria through Pearls Africa – an NGO focused on promoting the cause and advancement of vulnerable young girls and women). One of the initiatives of Pearls Africa is GirlsCoding, which equips, mentor, and coach girls from underserved communities in functional technology skills for the purpose of economic independence. Most of the beneficiaries are from the Slums, Correctional Center, Transit Homes and IDP Camps. Girls who meet certain criteria are given internship opportunities with Technology Startups.
Abisoye believes it’s important for young girls to know how to be creative with technology and not just be delegated to being forever users and consumers of it, every young girl deserves to be technology-savvy: From learning the basic knowledge of how the computer works, to learning how to make good use of the Microsoft office suites, thereby making good powerpoint presentations, basic knowledge of programming language to enable them have an idea of how the website works and be able to build their own basic websites and apps.
Abisoye teaches young girls how to identify problems in their immediate environment and create technology solutions to them, thereby taking the girls from being mere users to creators of technology. Abisoye believes through GirlsCoding, vulnerable young girls will have a voice and be economically empowered in the nearest future; through the series of trainings and exposure they receive.
Abisoye has over 14 years experience in Information Technology Solutions Development and is an experienced, certified and qualified Information Technology Professional. She is a Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) and Oracle Database Administrator (OCDBA), among others. Abisoye is technology savvy and a data analyst with a passionate heart for change and a strong will to making it happen, and is one of the most powerful names in advocacy in Nigeria.
Some of her many accolades include: Alumna of the U.S. Department of State-funded International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) – Education and Activism for Young Women track; Member of the United Nations Interagency Network on Youth Development (Youth4GenderEquality), New York; Member of the YALI Network, Washington D.C.; Youth Member of the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG), Science and Technology Policy Commission; YTech100 Award recipient for contributions to the Nigerian Technology Space; YNaija Power List 2017 Honoree; HerNetwork Woman of the Year 2017 Awardee in the Technology Category; ELOY Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 Awardee; CNN Heroes 2018 Honoree; and BBC 100Women 2018 Honoree. Abisoye’s work has been published in several journals and articles in the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Africa and Nigeria.