Kenyan Judith Owigar Is Uniting Women With NGO, Akirachix

hBasedWith her firm beliefs that exposure to education and technology can help improve the quality of life, Judith Owigar has spent her time and resources in helping to cater for the needs of women in Africa.  Being a Techpreneur, a Blogger and a Tech Enthusiast, Owigar is the Co-Founder and the Operations Director of AkiraChix, a non-profit organisation that aims to inspire and develop a successful force of women in technology who will change Africa’s future and also the Founder of JuaKali, an online micro-jobs platform that links skilled manual laborers in Kenya’s informal sector with employers in the construction industry.

Owigar, a native of Kenya attended University of Nairobi where she graduated with a diploma and a degree in Computer science. During her stay at the university, she co-founded a chapter of Kenya Model United Nations, a club that promotes international diplomacy among the youth.

Her zeal to improve the ways of her people and Africa in general pushed her into starting off as a tech support specialist in a Kenyan company called Turnkey Africa, a start up that provides solutions to insurance companies and banks in Africa. She later moved to the position of developer at a start up called Ibid Labs where she learnt developer skills. She later moved to Japan Center for Conflict Prevention (JCCP); an organization the deals with peace building in Macedonia, Afghanistan and East Africa. While attending the launch of the iHub, a space for hackers, designers and bloggers in Nairobi, she met up with other likeminded ladies who noticed the few ladies in attendance. Angela O. Lungati, Linda Kamai, Marie Githinji and Judith nOgiwar all decided to increase the ratio of women to men in tech which birthed the company, Akirachix.

Owigar has been awarded by the US embassy in Kenya for what Akirachix has done to promote women and give them a voice using science and technology. Together with a team of 2 other members, Judith was recognized as one of the top 50 SMEs in the Infodev Global forum, a donor funded agency of the World Bank. In 2009, Ogiwar was named as one of the Top 40 Under 40 by the Business Daily newspaper in Kenya. This is a listing of women who are changing the landscape of business and technology. In 2012, she was named the Best Female Engineer at the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers students’ exhibition.

Owigar is helping to influence the technology industry in Africa by increasing the number of women creating impact using technology.

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