YES Programs



Coded Kids

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In partnership with Zain Telecommunications Company, Ahmad Marafi (YES 2005-2006, Kuwait) launched the 2nd cycle of the Coded Kids Bootcamp through his coding institute, CODED.  Due to the great success of the first cycle in 2017, Ahmad decided to do it again this summer! Coded Kids Bootcamp, which is held at Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem Cultural Center, teaches children 7 -13 years old the basics of coding and technology using robots, art, and science with the latest tools and gadgets. The program runs from July 23rd through August 5th, 2018. 

We caught up with Ahmad in a phone interview about his project and about his work as the co-founder and CEO of the CODED institute, considered the first coding academy in the Middle East. Ahmad explained that CODED offers three types of bootcamps throughout the year:

  •  The Full Stack Bootcamp allows beginners to learn how to build apps and websites through an intensive 14 weeks bootcamp that goes over a wide variety of coding languages and frameworks (eg. Python, Django HTML5, JavaScript, ReactJS, and React-Native).
  • The Startup Bootcamp allows aspiring Kuwaiti tech entrepreneurs to learn how to run and manage a technical successful startup through non-technical modules (eg. fund-raising, ideation, marketing, product management, time management, etc.)
  • The Summer Coded Kids Bootcamp offers a unique experience for kids of ages 7 to 13 to learn the intersection of coding, technology, and art/music.
Ahmad Marafi Hashim Behbehani
Ahmed (right) with his business parter, Hisham.

Ahmad says he started the CODED institute after he was involved in starting and e-commerce startup and realized the drastic shortage of talented coders in the market.  Ahmad and his friend Hashim had the idea of starting this business to cultivate the next generation of coders in this region. It took these entrepreneurs three months to get from their idea to a pilot program with 12 students. 

Ahmad explains, "I realized that there are a lot of entrepreneurs in our part of the world trying to build technical startups but lack the skills to do that. So, we have created the Coded Full-Stack and Startup bootcamps to provide them with all the tools and skills needed to turn their startup ideas into successful businesses."

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He adds, "My main dream/goal is to give back to my Kuwaiti community.  Being an exchange student in 2006 on the YES Program has cultivated in me the idea of the importance of giving back to one's own community.  Communities grow through its individuals and I hope I can be of positive impact in helping my own Kuwaiti and Arab community advance and succeed.

"Through CODED, we are working to develop a true tech community in Kuwait and the Arab region to become multi-talented coders and entrepreneurs that capable of innovating and inventing software technologies, thus growing and succeeding in their own businesses."

You're invited to follow Ahmad's coding endeavors on social media! You can follow them on Instagram on @joincoded or visit their website: to know more about their bootcamps and events.