Samsung partners with Code Club to open Manchester learning Hub

South Korean vendor to kit out Manchester computer coding centre with laptops

Samsung is working with volunteer-led computer programming initiative Code Club to help young people in Manchester develop IT skills.

The vendor has vowed to provide laptops for kids to use that attend The Factory Youth Zone in Harpurhey, Manchester, which has been selected as the site of Code Club's second UK learning Hub.

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The Factory Youth Code Club will open today to provide 15 children at a time with the chance to learn how to code.

News of its opening follows on from Manchester City Council's earlier commitment to ensuring that at least a quarter of primary schools in the city feature a Code Club in 2015.

The site will be used to host weekly coding sessions for young people, as well as four training sessions a year for Code Club volunteers.

The South Korean tech vendor plans to open five such Hubs across the UK, as part of its goal of helping 70,000 children learn how to code by the end of 2015.

The first one was opened at the Dragon Hall Community Centre in Camden earlier this year.

Laura Kirsop, managing director of Code Club, said the plan is to open Hubs in areas with high levels of deprivation to help children from all backgrounds learn programming skills.

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"We're now living in a digital age where coding is useful in many hobbies and careers so it's essential that access to programs like Code Club is fair," she said.

"We're delighted that the second Hub is opening in Manchester as support in the city has been fantastic."

Code Club's aim is to provide primary school children between the age of 9 and 11 with after school access to coding lessons to help them create websites, computer games and animations.

The clubs are run exclusively by volunteers, and the organisation hopes to eventually have one located in every primary school in the country.

The work it does is considered a critical part of helping to solve the UK's IT skills crisis by encouraging more people from a younger age and from a diverse mix of backgrounds to consider a career in IT.

Andy Griffiths, president of Samsung Electronics UK and Ireland, added: "We are extremely proud to be in partnership with Code Club, a collaboration that forms part of our wider citizenship programme, which aims to bridge the digital divide and skills gap for young people in the UK."

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