DigiLocal People – Rishita & Thomas

DigiLocal is there to give young people the opportunity to discover and develop their digital talents. That generally means they aren’t into gaming or coding. Quite often there isn’t really anyone in their family or social circle that works with technology.

We were interested in why Rishita and Thomas started attending our clubs (other than just because their parents took them).

Rishita at home on her repurposed DigiLocal laptop during COVID-19 Pandemic

The reason why I am attending DigiLocal is that I have wanted to try something new such as coding and have learnt a lot. 


I can’t really remember!! 

I went to the library one day and witnessed a club taking place and was interested in computers. 

Prior to joining the club, I didn’t know much about computers or coding.


The projects are DigiLocal are all supported by written guides for the young people to follow. These give the structure and basic functionality for games and applications. We then encourage young people to continue those frameworks with their own ideas. This is where our volunteer mentors like George and Souya really come into their own, supporting the young people to challenge themselves to make more complex projects and experiment with how far they can take their ideas.

I enjoy starting and finishing new projects  – I feel really happy when it works. 


What I enjoy about attending the sessions is that the sessions are really interactive and I can work independently. It is not like school where I would have to wait until the teacher set out the work and will have to wait until everyone has finished. 

I only ask for help when I need it and there are lots of fun guides. . 

There is no set group to join. So if I find something easy, I can move on to harder stuff. 

With the online sessions-  I am able to do more coding and give me more opportunities. 

Thomas (left) with mentor Gabe and Abdirahman at the NASA Space Apps Challenge 2019

A key part of learning to overcome challenges, of any sort, is being able to enjoy the process of figuring out the answer. Sometimes you can do this alone, but often it’s easier with others (whether they are friends, colleagues, or mentors). It’s also important to set yourself challenges so you keep extending your abilities.

We wanted to know what the young people had found challenging while attending DigiLocal clubs.

What I have found challenging is using multiple windows at once. However, when i do find something challenging, I ask one of the volunteers and we are able to find a solution. 


Personally, I did not find anything challenging/hard. I found it really enjoyable! I tend to make things harder than they actually are.


DigiLocal doesn’t have a set curriculum. Young people follow project guides and learn by doing. While it’s useful to know a particular language (python being very popular at the moment), it’s more important to learn how to think a problem through and recognise core programming concepts to building a solution.

I have learned how to use scratch. 


I have learnt scratch and python. Generally, I have learnt a lot more about coding than before. I did not have a computer at home and only used a computer once a month at school. 


DigiLocal wants to help prepare young people for the world of work after our clubs. We were interested to know what they thought about their future activities after DigiLocal and school.

I want to get into the tech industry and in terms of a job, to be a CEO for a tech company. 


I definitely want to get into coding. Not sure about jobs at the moment. 

Possibly a software engineer or making electronics stuff.