As the first employee of Kabisa, I’ve seen Kabisa grow from the small three-person start-up to the business we are today. And that business consists of men. Not mostly men, just men. All developers are men, no women. And that’s not a company policy.
Throughout all of my career as a software engineer I’ve never encountered many women. Even in college the number of female students was less that 1%. Understandably, it’s not easy for girls or women to find their way into a male dominated industry. Just take look at firefighters and the military. But there should be no obstacles preventing girls from pursuing a career in technology or software engineering.
I believe that everyone in our industry can and should make an effort to make everyone feel welcome and at home in our community. One part is making the community a place where women want to be. The other part is allowing girls to take that first step towards getting there as easy as possible.
In 2010 Linda Liukas and Karri Saarinen organized Rails Girls in Helsinki, Finland. This event aimed to open up technology and make it more approachable for girls and women. Over a hundred girls showed up for that event and Rails Girls soon spread all over the world. Rails Girls has no central organization or committee, it’s organized by local girls (or guys, occasionally) for the sole purpose of lowering the barrier to the world of technology and web development.
Rails Girls is already gaining traction to The Netherlands as well. Last september there was Rails Girl The Hague, and the next event, Rails Girls Groningen, is scheduled to take place this weekend.
Kabisa wants to make software engineering accessible to everyone, regardless of gender, race or whatever. Kabisa is committed to sponsoring Rails Girls events in our region. As part of that commitment, Kabisa sends two coaches, @patrickbaselier and @ariejan, to Groningen to help get a group of girls find their way into technology and software development.
Kabisa is also in contact with Rails Girls Leiden (February 2014) and Rails Girls Eindhoven (January 2014) to discuss sponsoring and providing coaches.
If you are a girl and want to attend a Rails Girls event, check RailsGirls.com, or one of our coaches via Twitter.
Thinking about organizing a local Rails Girls event? Get in touch with us or one of our coaches to see how we can help.
Are you looking to connect with software craftsmen and craftswomen, why not come to The Guild, February 27th, 2014 in Eindhoven.