Helping people with disabilities Get Coding

August 17, 2023

The Northpine Foundation and Get Coding are thrilled to announce an investment of $500,000 aimed at tackling the pressing issue of unemployment among people with disabilities (PWD) in Newfoundland and Labrador. This strategic investment will bridge the gap between the tech sectors burgeoning demand for skilled workers and the underutilized potential of people with disabilities.

Newfoundland and Labrador currently faces a staggering unemployment rate of 45.9% among PWDs, while the provinces thriving tech sector is poised to add over 2000 jobs within the next five years. Get Coding aims to address this challenge head-on, as CEO Jan Mertlik explains, Our goal is to empower at least 50 individuals with disabilities from rural areas to secure employment as software programmers, fulfilling the tech industry’s demand and unlocking the potential of talented individuals who have been overlooked for too long.”

Get Codings innovative approach combines hands-on learning with one-on-one mentorship from industry professionals, providing practical insights and industry knowledge to aspiring software developers. With an impressive record of accomplishment of 96% employment for graduates of earlier program cohorts, Get Coding is set to expand its reach to include individuals with disabilities in rural areas.

Mertlik further elaborates, The Northpine investment will allow us to carve a path for PWDs in remote areas to develop software skills and contribute to the tech sector. Our model can revolutionize the sector by tearing down geographical and perceived disability barriers, making employment accessible to all.”

The investment, structured around performance milestones, reflects a commitment to creating a lasting impact. We believe that by joining forces with Get Coding, we are not just investing in a single initiative but planting the seeds for sustainable meaningful change,” notes Mark Lane, Impact Director — Rural Newfoundland & Labrador at the Northpine Foundation. Filling the tech sector’s demand for capable workers will attract more companies to look to Newfoundland & Labrador for their tech talent, in turn transforming lives and communities in remote Newfoundland and Labrador.”

The success of this initiative could have far-reaching implications, with Get Coding open to partnering government departments, agencies, and tech industry stakeholders, to replicate this model to empower people with disabilities across Canada.

Get Codings initiative with support from the Northpine Foundation as a catalyst for change is a testament to the power of collaboration and determination. As Newfoundland and Labrador’s tech sector looks to the future, Get Coding is leading the charge to ensure that no one is left behind, removing barriers in tech education and employment opportunities.

Learn more about Get Coding here and see the Northpine Foundation’s investments in Rural Newfoundland & Labrador here.