Here is a brief overview, to get you up to speed on what Codebar is, and why we choose to support it.
At Matchbox we are committed to promoting diversity, unfortunately the tech industry still does not yet reflect the diverse society it serves. Which is always brought to light when attending conferences, advertising for staff, or meeting other businesses.
Codebar actively encourages women and people underrepresented in tech to learn skills that can help them to get jobs as developers, and provides a support network of people they are able to ask for advice. This benefits people who want to become developers themselves, or those who wish to better understand web technology, and what goes in to making a website.
Jo (a Matchbox Producer) organised the evening, and welcomed a group from a whole variety of skills and backgrounds. As a follow up to the event, Jo compiled a list of questions to ask some of the attendees, who we’ll hear from in this post.
It’s a nice, friendly, relaxed atmosphere – which is great for people of varying skill sets to feel comfortable, and able to ask any questions without worry. Starting the night off with pizza and some ‘how do you do’s’ allows everyone a chance to mingle and settle in before the brainstorming/learning/and problem-solving begins.
Clara – a Codebar attendee who is learning skills for both home, and personal use would recommend the event for any/all interested parties.
“It’s really welcoming to new people, they always ask if there are any new people at the beginning of the session and don’t assume people know/don’t know anything.”
People branch off into pairs or small groups, aiming to keep a 1:1 or 1:2 ratio, to ensure everyone gets the most out of the evening.
Siri, a Codebar attendee from Sweden, who has been almost every week since March 2015 was asked what she gets out of Codebar, and why it is a good idea:
“I think Codebar is an amazing and really important initiative because there is a demand for diversity in tech. Codebar has shown me that it doesn’t matter what your age, gender or background it, if you enjoy coding – whether as a hobby or career – there are lots of opportunities out there, and people in the industry are willing to share their knowledge with you. I definitely don’t think I would have had the confidence or skills to apply for my current web developer job if it wasn’t for Codebar.”
“I really recommend it! I think both students and coaches learn loads and it’s a nice little community to be part of.”
Siri decided to pop along after seeing the event advertised on Wired Sussex, she started on the first tutorial with basic HTML/CSS and enjoyed it so much that she changed her career!
This just shows how much of a difference organisations like Codebar can make; whether it be for a hobby, a bettering of skills, or an entire career change – it is a great community to be part of.
Clara heard about Codebar through ex-colleagues who had nothing but nice things to say about the events, and as a current member, she doesn’t disagree.
“It’s good to hear the mindset that it’s not too late to get into coding as a career, or that people need a degree in a related topic. That was possibly the biggest help. I had built almost an entire website on my own before learning of Codebar but I became unmotivated as I didn’t think it could lead to anywhere. Hopefully it can. It’s nice to see the different offices people work in too. It’s also good to meet new people interested in coding.”
We weren’t surprised to hear the positive words from the Codebar attendees, as much fun as they have attending, we had hosting.