POETA DigiSpark

Argentina - Brasil - Chile - Colombia - Mexico
Project under implementation


POETA DigiSpark seeks to empower adults (18 - 65) through technology to facilitate their access to economic opportunities such as obtaining a job or a promotion, creating a venture, or obtaining an internship. Through reskilling and upskilling training focused on providing digital, technical, and life skills, POETA DigiSpark prepares participants with the necessary skills to compete in the 21st-century labor market.

POETA DigiSpark also seeks to provide training in computer science and digital skills to teachers and facilitators of any discipline, in order to promote the use of technology to new generations.

POETA DigiSpark is funded by Microsoft and implemented by The Trust for the Americas through its local partners in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, and Mexico.

Project purpose

POETA DigiSpark seeks to support the insertion and reintegration of adults into the private sector through employment and professional practices, as well as the start-up and strengthening of the technology-supported venture. In parallel, POETA DigiSpark also seeks to facilitate training in digital skills, including computer science, to teachers, in order to promote and replicate the use of technology among its student.

Project goals

At least 60% of the participants need to be women; and 80% of the participants need to be adults in conditions of vulnerability.

In 2020, we seek to provide reskilling and upskilling training to about 5,000 adults and teacher.

In 2020, we seek to facilitate the creation of 1,700 economic and educational opportunities in the form of continuing education, obtaining an internship or employment and strengthening or creation an entrepreneurship.

Main achievements

Since the implementation of the project in 2012, POETA DigiSpark has managed to benefit around 234,000 participants through access to technology centers and has empowered more than 40,000 participants through training and has facilitated about 20,000 economic and educational opportunities. Education in the region.
In 2019, more than 61,000 visits to technolog centers were registered through our local partner. Also, more than 7,000 young people and 2,000 teachers were empowered through access to training in digital skills and computer science.
In 2019, POETA DigiSpark facilitated more than 3,200 economic and educational opportunities, including the creation of social and economic entrepreneurship, obtaining a job or an internship and participants continuing their education.


STAGE 1: Identification of Local Partners

• Mapping of Needs: Identify the particular needs and challenges of the local population to benefit in order to define the goals of the local partner. 

• Training: Local partners receive training and ongoing support through the field team of The Trust for the Americas. This builds the capacity of local partners to promote free and safe spaces that facilitate the acquisition of knowledge and skills.

STAGE 2: Implementation

• Training: Local partners provide comprehensive training in digital literacy, computer science, and job readiness through POETA DigiSpark. 

•Economic Opportunities: POETA DigiSpark seeks to facilitate the insertion and reintegration of adults into the private sector through employment and professional practices, as well as the start-up and strengthening of technology-supported entrepreneurship. 

• Visibility and Communication: The Trust for the Americas uses digital media and marketing tools strategically in order to make visible the work of our local partners as well as the results and success stories of the participants.

STAGE 3: Monitoring & Evaluation

• Monitoring & Evaluation: At POETA DigiSpark, we seek to promote best practices regarding periodic data collection for stronger monitoring and evaluation of results. 

Strategic partners

Success Stories

Mitsy creates a platform to support her students’ learning

Santiago de Chile - Chile

Mitsy is a facilitator at Fundacion Lace, in Santiago, Chile, who teaches digital skills to underserved youth. Her motivation has always been to be able to share her knowledge with more students. Thanks to the training in computer science for teachers she received at the Center, Mitsy was able to program a website through which students can access their study materials. Also, Mitsy is developing a prototype of an Android app with the same objective.  

Thanks to POETA DigiSpark, today Mitsy has the tools to create platforms that make it easier for her students to learn. In the future, Mitsy wants to further engage her students by developing more websites and apps for educational purposes. 

An app to jump-start the local economy

Pasto - Colombia

Gustavo is a 22-year-old Software Engineering student and part-time waiter from Pasto, Colombia. As a resilient student, Gustavo decided to join POETA YouthSpark, now DigiSpark, at the ParqueSoft Center to improve his digital and entrepreneurial skills. 

Thanks to the computer science training he took and his interest in innovating through technology, Gustavo programmed a mobile application prototype called Chakar (from Quechua). His application serves as a platform that informs users of nearby promotions of products and services. Gustavo is committed to position Chakar as a key platform to strengthen the economic activity of his community. 

Gustavo plans to continue his training with POETA DigiSpark to prepare himself to Empower your DNA Code, a local competition where the best digital innovations compete. 

Migrating for a better life in Colombia

Montería, Colombia

Like millions of displaced Venezuelans, María José migrated to Colombia with the hope of building a better life for herself and her family. María José decided to join POETA YouthSpark, which evolves into DigiSpark in 2020, at the UPB (Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana) Center, where she not only made new friends but also learned how to build a website and use social media to advertise a brand. 

Thanks to the help of POETA YouthSpark, María José and her peers were able to start their own business: Peinarte Spa. Through Microsoft’s tools and The Trust’s training, María José and her team designed the beauty salon’s business model, marketing strategy, website, and social media profiles.  

Besides fulfilling her life-long dream of being an entrepreneur, María José shares she now feels part of Colombia as an active member of the Montería community. In the future, María José envisions helping other Venezuelan refugees living in Colombia. Her motto is “If I can do it, you can do it as well”.

Which of the following SDGS (Sustainable Development Goals) this project support?