Nelly Cheboi: From a disadvantaged village girl to a remarkable CNN Hero of the Year.

Meet – Nelly Cheboi, remarkable Software Engineer, she quit her software engineering job in the US to build tech labs for underprivileged rural school kids in Africa.

She is the Founder and CEO of TechLit Africa, an organization that builds computer labs and teaches digital skills in rural primary schools.

Nelly Cheboi grew up in poverty in rural Kenyan village, where she often went hungry and missed school because her single mother could not afford school fees.

Against all odds, she was the top of her class in primary and secondary school, then studied at Kenya Poly and ultimately received a college scholarship at Augustana College in America.

She worked odd jobs to support her family, and discovered her passion for computer science.

In 2016, Nelly obtained a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics from Augustana College.

She immediately secured a software engineering job with a number of American companies before quitting to build her own private school Zawadi Yetu Mogotio and establish tech labs for underprivileged rural school kids in Kenya.

Since 2018, Nelly has given over 4,000 kids the opportunity to learn a variety of computer programs and gain technical skills that will position them for family-sustaining jobs and brighter futures.

In December 2022, she was crowned CNN Hero of the Year.

In January 2024, she won the Educator Award at t he TRT World Citizen Awards.

“This is a win for all African mothers. I want to get to 100 schools which translates to 40,000 school-going children. We need to rewrite what it means to grow up in rural Africa because people can work glamorous jobs and still work in your community,” said Nelly Cheboi.

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Written by : Valentine Zoza
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