New year, new ideas and opportunities! In January, the SheSharp team - Amanda, Sara, Kristina, Gabi, Georgia, Mariah, and Ayu - met to review 2023 and plan for 2024. Each year, we do this to discuss and decide what is most important for us to focus on. As volunteers alongside full-time jobs, our capacity changes unexpectedly throughout the year and having a clear focus helps us adapt. As a result, we have some exciting plans lined up for you all!
Reflecting on 2023
As you may have seen in our socials, we had a fantastic year! Some key stats:
366 new members in our Slack
10 awardees of our New in Tech scholarship
15 events held (online and in-person)
5 Programmes and Workshops facilitated
8 Sharpies of the Month
19 Blog Posts
3 New Team Members
A brand new public roadmap!
Our most popular online event was a talk and workshop on Harnessing the Strengths of Neurodiversity for Tech by Kim To, recognising that there are many more relevant and interwoven facets of underrepresented diversity in addition to gender for our community.
Finally, I want to thank our incredible teammates Alex and Caraline, who have chosen to leave our team but remaining members of our community - we are so grateful for your contributions! As Director of Strategy, Alex was an incredible force in driving many of our successful initiatives such as the hackathon, career coaching, and our public roadmap! And our Community Manager, Caraline brought new life to our Slack community. We are sharing their load amongst the team for now, but plan to review our need to add new team members later in the year.
In 2022, we revised our mission to focus on making it easier for women and non-binary people enter, stay, and grow in the Tech industry. Following a significant increase in our online community who were in the entry phase of their Tech careers, we chose to design later initiatives (e.g. our New in Tech scholarship, mentorship program, career coaching, recruitment support, and hackathon) with this group in mind. In 2024, we have decided to shift our focus to those who are in the Grow phase. This does not mean that we won’t support newcomers or those who are looking for less active growth - we will always endeavour to support as broad a group as possible. This year, we renamed our scholarships to "Grow in Tech" - open to anyone who is taking active steps to develop and speed up their career in the industry, providing a clear example of this shift in practice.
2024 is also a year of scaling our efforts. Like any organisation, we started scrappy - doing the things that felt right in the moment, guided by our mission and working principles, but with minimal future planning. With teammates leaving and plans to expand volunteer opportunities, we have realised that we must make our ways of working easier to adopt and be more effective with our time, and to better use learnings from past efforts including:
Evolving our successful hackathons, hosting a new open source code space for our developers to learn together. This year we will not host a hackathon, in favour of building this space and community. We are excited for Ayu to join our team and take the lead in this space!
Host more casual in-person events, like co-working days. This will allow for more networking and connection building.
Seek more opportunities for our community members to develop and test their interests through our platform.
Invest in internal security and transparent knowledge sharing through documentation and public spaces.
Continue to support our growing global community, with online opportunities and events, while remaining focused on the community based in the Netherlands.
We hope that you are as excited as we are for 2024! Please DM us on Slack or send us an email if you have any questions, comments, or just want to chat 😊