Silicon Valley Black Chamber of Commerce Recruits Black Youth for Tech/Sports

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HackathonThe Silicon Valley Black Chamber of Commerce, an organization whose mission is to “create, identify and/or expand economic development opportunities for African Americans and minorities in Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area,” has won a grant that will enable the Chamber to host several PLAY 60, Play On challenge events throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, designed to encourage creativity in solving problems and using active play and movement to be more physically fit.

Carl Davis Jr., President of Silicon Valley Black Chamber of Commerce states, “The employer diversity data in the technology sector is a clear indicator of the opportunities ahead. The current generation of youth and young adults of African descent will direct a significant portion of the cultural landscape of Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area. It is our duty to find innovative ways to prepare them for 2020 and beyond.”

PLAY 60, Play On, an initiative of the Super Bowl 50 Legacy Fund, the NFL Foundation and guided by KaBoom,  helps combat childhood obesity and helps build creative and innovative neighborhood projects that will make balanced and active play more easily accessible so kids can thrive.

Over the coming weeks, PLAY 60, Play On challenges will take place on January 16, 23 and 31. The Silicon Valley Black Youth Hack-a-Thon is another planned event that will bring together more than 150 talented African American youth and young adults, ages 16 to 24, from Bay Area high schools, colleges, clubs and companies for an opportunity to compete in a technology challenge. Hack-a-Thon participants can compete for cash prizes, awards and scholarships. The registration form, which can be found on the Chamber’s website, must be completed by January 14.

Chamber officials say kids of all ages, families and young adults are invited to participate.

The Chamber’s events are inspired by the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee’s challenge to local nonprofits to share with the world the unique neighborhoods, culture, activities and spirit of the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley. More than 400 youth from around the San Francisco Bay Area will participate in the SVBCC challenge events.

Sponsors and partners include Bay Area Tutoring Association, Rocket Fuel Inc., City of San Jose, City of East Palo Alto and UC Berkeley. The events bring together an all-star list of national sponsors including Black Enterprise, AT&T, Intel Corporation, UNCF and #YESWECODE.

The Chamber has also garnered pledges of support and collaboration from other Northern California Black Chambers of Commerce and local organizations supporting youth including Street Code Academy, California Alliance of African American Educators, Santa Clara County Alliance of Black Educators, National Black MBA Association, Jack and Jill of America and Codewritingkids.com.

(CLICK HERE to read a related article about diveristy in technology.)