CoderDojo WA End of Year PARTY

The CoderDojo WA community had a fabulous night celebrating another great year of coding last night. Ninjas, Mentors and Champions from around WA descended upon Scitech to share their ideas and innovative projects. 

Ninjas shared stories about debugging, glitches and syntax errors, negotiating coding challenges and how they have such fun coding with their friends.  

Annie Fogarty, Executive Chairperson of the Fogarty Foundation, thanked the CoderDojo WA community for their passion and enthusiasm before welcoming CoderDojo WA’s new partnership with Curtin University. 

“Curtin University are a leading technology and future learning institute with a range of STEM programs that will grow the impact of CoderDojo WA going forward,” she said. 

“Since the Fogarty Foundation started CoderDojo in Western Australia in 2008, there have been over 150 Dojos across the state, 300+ Champions, more than 600 Mentors and over 4,000 Ninjas coding and creating.  We are thrilled to be working with Curtin University and look forward to an exciting and innovative partnership.” 

Tim Keely, Curtin’s STEM Outreach Coordinator and new Manager of CoderDojo WA said he was really looking forward to working with the Ninjas, Mentors and Champions who make the coding world so much fun.  

“Computing and digital technologies are a core part of Curtin’s DNA, so we are excited to join forces with the Fogarty Foundation to support the CoderDojo WA movement,” he said. 

“Giving you, our coding community, the opportunity to explore your interests in computing is a rich and rewarding experience. You are the future of our coding world, and we can’t wait to see your innovations of the future.” 

Professor Chris Rawson, Dean for the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Curtin University also welcomed the new partnership, before sharing his enthusiasm for the future of Science and Engineering in WA. 

Thank you to the many volunteers who assisted throughout the evening. Once again, your help was invaluable and greatly appreciated by the CoderDojo WA community.  

We look forward to another innovative and fun year of coding in 2022.  

Scitech was abuzz this week, as coding ninjas from around WA joined forces to showcase their work and celebrate another fun year within the CoderDojo WA community.  

Presenters came from far and wide including Amherst Library, Rosalie Primary School, Beechboro Library, Alkimos Library and Falcon FabLab. They spoke about the fun they have when coding with their friends and the challenges they come across, such as solving debugging and syntax errors. 

“I enjoy coding things to move and I enjoy attempting to make and understand code. It is a great challenge,” Dylan (Canningvale) commented.  

“The coding is the easy part, it’s when you find a glitch going through all that code that is the challenge,” he said. 

“I really enjoy coding because I love socialising with other like-minded coders sharing a common interest,” Thomas (Shenton Park) said. 

“I really love making a quirky backstory to the things I create,” he added. 

Scitech’s Rich Williams spoke about the long friendship the Fogarty Foundation, CoderDojo WA and Scitech have had, saying that Scitech was thrilled to host the CoderDojo WA community. 

“What the Fogarty Foundation are doing, really aligns with what Scitech is all about,” Mr Williams said. 

“Encouraging a passion for science, technology and life-long learning. 

“2020 has shown us how important STEM subjects are. Epidemiologists, scientists, and those working in the technology space. Innovation at the forefront of quickly adapting to the needs of the community,” he said. 

Ninjas displayed interactive games, LEGO EV3 robots, drones and more.  

Annie Fogarty, Executive Chairperson of the Fogarty Foundation, thanked the CoderDojo WA community for their passion and enthusiasm before Simon Thuijs, Manager of CoderDojo WA, facilitated a Q&A with some young and innovative Ninjas. 

“It is great to see so many young people passionate about technology,” Mr Thuijs said to the group. 

“We are really proud of you: the innovative projects you have created and the communities you have built. 

“You are the next generation of leaders in WA and we look forward to seeing the amazing work you do in the future,” he said.  

Thank you to the many volunteers who assisted us throughout the evening, your help was invaluable and greatly appreciated by the CoderDojo WA community. 

To have a thriving and prosperous community, we need young people to be enterprising so they can create long term, sustainable economic and social impact.

Through EDfutures, the Fogarty Foundation is creating initiatives to help enable these skills and develop entrepreneurial mindsets.

We need to energise a new generation who see entrepreneurialism not as something that a few people ‘do’ but rather as a way of working and thinking that underpins something that anyone can ‘be’.

Dave Sherwood, UWA Fogarty Scholar Alumni, is CEO and co-founder of BibliU, a London-based start-up spun out of the University of Oxford Innovation Fund and now supported by the Fogarty Scholars Enterprise Investment Program.

After completing a Bachelor of Science (Chemistry and Physics) at the University of Western Australia, Dave was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship and travelled to Oxford to study Politics, Philosophy and Economics.

Having established his entrepreneurial skills when founding Teach, Learn, Grow, Dave was ready for another challenge and began working on his current venture, BibliU.

BibliU is a modern eTextbook platform that integrates with library and university systems. It has distribution agreements with all major academic publishers including Pearson, Wiley and McGraw, and is currently used by 43 universities and more than 100,000 students.

In 2019, Dave and his BibliU co-founders were honoured on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneurs list.

During a recent Q&A with the Fogarty Enterprise team, Dave shared his thoughts on the four components to successful enterprise and why he thinks individuals, organisations and companies should learn to take more risks.

You can see the full Q&A here.

We live in a rapidly changing and increasingly digital world. Technology dominates many industries and coding literacy is gradually becoming one of the most important skills for current and future generations to learn. 

What is coding?

Coding is a tool that lets you write your story with technology. It’s how we talk to the machines that are increasingly woven into our lives. If you can code, you can communicate your ideas with a computer or a program so they can be brought to life in bigger, brighter and more creative ways. It allows you to create things like software, apps, websites and tools to analyse the world around us. 

Why learn to code?

WA is risking a workforce that is under skilled and under-prepared for the future. The number of jobs available in digital industries is on the increase and a shortfall in skilled and ready for work graduates is predicted to create a ‘digital innovation bottleneck’ in Australian businesses. With a significant use of computer and tablet technologies in schools, particularly in Australia, it is important to make the distinction between technology consumers and technology creators. Rather than focusing exclusively on the use of available technology, WA needs people who can create new technologies using code.

How can CoderDojo WA help?

CoderDojo WA aims to provide young people with more opportunities to develop their digital literacy skills across the board, becoming creators and not just consumers of technology. By giving people the time to explore, design and create in a digital landscape, CoderDojo WA acts to overcome the challenges of engaging more youth in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), ensuring that Western Australia can take a leading role in the digital economy.

Whether you choose to pursue a career in technology or not, it is clear that in the digital economy every young person will benefit from some knowledge of coding.

CoderDojo is a world-wide social education movement oriented around running free computer coding clubs (Dojos) for young people aged 7-17 (Ninjas). At CoderDojo, Ninjas work on their own code-related projects such as websites, apps, game development and more, with the support of volunteer Mentors.

A Dojo is not a workshop or class, it is a club – a social environment in which young people can have fun learning to code. Ninjas support each other, with the additional assistance of Mentors. Within a school environment, your Ninjas are your students learning to code. Mentors could be more experienced or senior students who enjoy coding and your Champion could be the teacher-in-charge or an interested parent. 

CoderDojo WA provides everything you need to start your Dojo, including:

To start your Dojo or find out more about the CoderDojo WA community visit