So you’ve passed matric but didn’t apply or get admission to your desired tertiary education course, but would still like to get involved in something that could come in very handy in future? Why not try a coding programme? For free.

There are a number of public and private coding programmes offered for free to young South Africans who are interested in getting started with it or expanding on the knowledge and experience they already have.

Knowing how to code is also a gateway into careers such as a mobile app and desktop developer as well as software development. You could also go the entrepreneurship route and offer your services as a freelancer to different companies and individuals.

Below is a list of some of the organisations that will be running coding programmes this year:


Reconstructed Living Labs (RLabs) is a Cape Town-based coding and innovation programme with international reach in United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, South America. RLabs runs regular coding courses every year, giving young South Africans the opportunity to be introduced to it at no charge.

RLabs will be kicking off a four month Java programming course beginning this month and applications to be part of it are already open. If you’re in the Cape Town, you can apply by filling out this form and submitting it before the 12th January.


The City of Joburg Educating Digital Intern initiative (COJEDI) is a digital internship launched by the Gauteng metro in 2015 to drive innovation among the city’s youth between the ages of 18 and 35 and equip them with skills and knowledge for the working world.

COJEDI takes in 250 or 5000 interns per term and trains them web development, fibre optics, Microsoft Systems Engineering and Cisco Network Associates. The programme is looking for its next 500 interns, you can apply on the COJEDI website, deadline is 18th January.


codeX is another organisation based in the Mother City. It runs a full-time weekly apprenticeship where you’ll learn to develop for existing local companies using Java, PHP, Python, and Javascript.

The year-long programme starts in February and ends in December. You can apply by filling in this online form.

If you don’t get admitted to either one of these programme for one reason or another, don’t give up just yet. Keep reapplying once applications for a new intake is opened. There are also a number of other ones that usually come up during the year, so keep an eye out for those as well.

[Image – Code4CT]