Amjad Yehia, a 24-year-old Palestinian, returned to Gaza after spending his childhood in Sudan. Never having the opportunity to finish university, Amjad was unsure how he would establish a new life in Gaza- until his sister, a graduate of the Gaza Sky Geeks Freelance Academy, recommended that he consider Gaza Sky Geeks’ Career Accelerator.
“Being unable to pursue a job of my own, create an income, and be financially independent made me feel frustrated and demotivated”.
Amjad was interested in technology and had previously taught himself the basics of coding, but online learning has its limitations, so he applied for and was accepted by Gaza Sky Geek’s Career Accelerator in 2022.
“It was the best and hardest decision I had ever made, but I’m confident I’ll never regret it; being able to learn coding from professional mentors was invaluable!”
All Amjad desired before returning to Gaza was to develop his career and earn a decent income to support himself. Now, Amjad wants to specialize in front-end development and become a big name in the field.
“Google for Startups internship gave me exposure to a real working environment. Previously, I wasn’t confident in my own capabilities although I knew I had the basic skills needed to start a career.”
The Google for Startups internship aims to develop the skills of junior tech talents, web developers and software engineers. Interning at a high-paced startup or tech company or enables them to strengthen their hard and soft skills and progress their performance through practice- all that is needed to start their careers in multinational organizations and startups.
“While working with Lazzaro I was introduced to a new technology stack that I had to learn in a very short time. Training with Gaza Sky Geeks gave me the confidence to learn a new specialization in just two weeks”.
Abedalrahman Shamia, a 27-year-old from Gaza, graduated from Al Azhar University with a degree in dentistry. After working in a dentist’s clinic for two years, Abedalrahman found himself feeling unfulfilled and incapable of generating sufficient income. Eager to explore new options in life, Abedalrahman made the difficult decision to step away from his current career path and enroll in the Gaza Sky Geeks’ Career Accelerator. As soon as he joined, he loved being immersed in a community of developers and mentors and quickly felt a sense of belonging in his new field of technology.
“When I was selected to be part of Google for Startups internship and was chosen to give the graduation ceremony speech, these were big moments and turning points in my life.”
Working with Lazzaro provided Abedalrahman with hands-on experience, and the opportunity to work directly with a startup founder and a CTO has opened up a fresh way of thinking for him.
“Working with professionals and startup founders gave me exactly the perspective I needed to broaden my understanding of coding, and gain insight into the tech and entrepreneurship ecosystem.”
A Golden Opportunity
After graduating from the Career Accelerator, Amjad and Abedalrahman landed an internship with Lazzaro, a Spain-based startup that is part of the Google for Startups network. Lazzaro is a web-based platform that helps social impact organizations raise funds in a sustainable and transparent way. Co-founder Carlota Corzo was interested in scaling her tech team, so she took part in the Gaza Sky Geeks-Google for Startups internship program in search of high quality developers.
Carlota says: “We struggled to hire junior developers from Spain and Latin America, and we don’t have the human resource experience to recruit highly skilled and motivated talents.”
Carlota is deeply rooted in the social sector, having established three NGOs herself. She was excited to work with Gaza Sky Geeks to seek tech talent from outside of Spain and Latin America. Reflecting on her experience working with the Gaza Sky Geeks Talent Matching Team, Carlota says, “Gaza Sky Geeks provided us with a feeling of trust in both the developers and the matching process.
I was impressed by the developers’ technical skills, and especially their soft skills and project management skills.”
When Carlota met the Google for Startups and Gaza Sky Geeks talent matching team, she felt relieved that she could finally find reliable resources to work for Lazzaro.
“I was pleasantly surprised not just by their technical skills, but especially by their soft skills, and their management skills, and then we thought they should stay.”
Both Amjad and Abedalrahman were hired by Lazarro after their internship was completed, a culmination of a challenging journey that all started with an application to the GSG Career Accelerator.
Would you like to change a geek’s life like Amjad and Abedalrahman?
Hire or Train from our pool of Palestinian tech talents! Gaza Sky Geeks has a dedicated team that can match your business needs with the right talent.
You can fill in this simple form here: www.gazaskygeeks.com/talent.
For inquiries, you can reach out here: [email protected].
Gaza Sky Geeks; a program by Mercy Corps; is Palestine’s leading tech-hub. We provide a wide range of tech trainings to young Palestinains, transforming them into internationally competitive tech talents. In 2022 we trained more than 5,000 participants; 55% of whom were women. We recently expanded our interventions to include capacity building for Palestinian tech service companies, driving new sources of international revenue and equipping companies with trained tech talents. Click here for a comprehensive list of our activities.