Technology is geeky and cool but it does not always come dressed in a hoodie. Tech also comes dressed in beauty and in woman, and Janet Silantoi Leparteleg from Kenya plates up that very well.
She is the founder of Butterfly Techies, a community based organization that teaches young girls in high school in Samburu STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics].
She comes from a community where a lot of people believe that girls are mostly successful as nurses or teachers. This was the advice she got while growing up.
Tech is my second name. I was exposed to both urban and rural lives when growing up which allowed me to make the decision to pursue computer studies.
I pursued a degree in Business Information Technology at JKUAT, Karen campus. I am also a certified incident handler.
At Butterfly Techies, we have grown from 20 girls in 2016 to 100 girls currently.
I work at the ICT Authority. I enjoy my work because we are tasked with the responsibility of rationalizing and streamlining the management of all Government of Kenya ICT functions, towards effective public service delivery.
Silantoi is an alumna of the Presidential Digital Talent Program [PDTP], TechWomen program in Silicon Valley 2017 under the U.S Embassy. She is also a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow.
This intrepid young leader is all forms of beauty and brains. Her conversations are deep and satiating, and revolving around current affairs which as an introvert, I thoroughly enjoy.
My vision is to pursue my Masters in Cyber Security & Forensics in the next two years.
I intend together with my team, to build a fully fledged cyber security firm employing 80% women. Gender equality starts with you and I Sue, and I hope you’re playing your part. [laughter]
I’m in the process of streamlining a business unit where my girls can work and earn money for their future studies. My goal is to ensure they don’t stop at high school but get admitted to institutions of higher learning.
I always encourage the youth to stay true to their goals and to never give up. I face challenges like balancing between work, my organization and family but this doesn’t stop me.
I adore conversations and networking. Just last month we had code week where I partnered with MWF fellows.
Silantoi has partnered with other TechWomen alumna on a sanitation project and creating awareness on hygiene in Kenya.
She built a toilet in a rural school in Samburu as a pilot project which is set to launch next year. She has registered an app to fund her sanitation classes. These are areas she’s constantly looking to partner.
When this all rounded young lady is not doing the serious stuff, she loves to dance, eat chips (she even has her own chips masala recipe) and play with her two young children. Keep Soaring Silantoi.