Tech Guru in Ghana Conquers Cerebral Palsy to Become One of the Most Influential African Women in STEM

As a Black woman, Farida Bedwei already had some serious challenges ahead if she wanted to launch a successful career in the tech space. Being diagnosed with cerebral palsy meant she had yet another obstacle to navigate on her road to becoming a software engineer — but she didn’t necessarily see it that way.

Bedwei was only 1 year old when she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, an incurable neurological disorder that impacts muscle coordination and body movement.

Bedwei assured herself that her disorder would never get in the way of the things she hoped to accomplish, and her impressive success in the technology field today is proof that she lived up to her word.

After conquering tech’s high barriers to entry for Black people and women, Bedwei is now the co-founder and chief technical officer of Logiciel. She was also deemed the most influential woman in business and government in Africa for the financial sector by South Africa’s CEO Magazine.

She has accomplished things that many aspiring tech entrepreneurs would only dream about, including developing a cloud platform that is currently being used by more than 100 micro-finance companies, CNN reported.

It would be hard to find anyone who would refer to Bedwei as a woman with a disability before they identified her as a tech guru, influential businesswoman and a software engineering mastermind.

Her journey to tech stardom began when she was only 12 years old.

She had been home-schooled all her life until that age. At that point, Bedwei was enrolled at a government school so that she could begin socializing with other children.

When her family realized she had a serious interest in computers, they decided that she would skip out on her senior year of high school and enroll in a computer course at the St. Michael information technology center instead.

“I’m sure most of my classmates were wondering what I was doing with them,” Bedwei said as she reflected on being the youngest of her class, according to CNN. “And that is how I started my career as a software engineer because through that course I realized what aspect of IT I was going to specialize in. I loved the idea of solving problems and creating things.”

From that point forward, Bedwei was always setting new goals for herself and working tirelessly to make sure she was able to achieve every one of them.

After she graduated from the information technology center, she decided that Soft, a premier software company in Ghana, was the best company for her.

She didn’t exactly check off all the boxes for the ideal candidate, but that didn’t stop her.

“I went and saw the head of the technical division and I told him, ‘I want a job here, I don’t have any experience, but I’m inspired to learn. … If you give me the chance, I promise you that you’ll never regret it,’ “ Bedwei continued.

Her plan worked and he offered Bedwei the opportunity to come on board the team.

Throughout the years, she worked at several different companies and spent nine years with Rancard Solutions.

By this time, she had already earned two diplomas and was on her way to earning a degree as well.

In 2010, she joined the team at G-Life Financial Services and began building her own cloud software program called gKudi with her colleague Derrick Dankyi.

Bedwei would be an incredible inspiration for anyone, but she has been an exceptionally stellar role model for young children who refuse to be limited by their own disabilities.

“I am a role model for a lot of children with disabilities, and it’s very important for me to showcase to the world that … Yes … You can have a disabled child, and it’s not the end of the world,” she said. “There is so much that that child can end up doing given the right resources.”

 

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