“I was stunned at the amount we raised,” said PyLadies member and volunteer auctioneer Katie Cunningham. Just days before, with the help of Barbara Shaurette, Cunningham was running a free two-day tutorial series for children titled “Young Coder: Let’s Learn Python”, which has been covered on the PyCon blog.
“It was great to see people having to stand in the room, all seats were taken,” said organizer Lynn Root of the event’s attendance. While PyCon’s formal schedule only lasts until the early evening, events like this auction and a series of informally organized meetups, called open spaces, keep the conference running through the night.
As for how the funds will be used, Laura Cassell, founder of PyLadies Atlanta, said, “We're all so resourceful already that I suspect this money is going to go a long way towards helping women who want to get into the industry. I'm still a little misty-eyed at the whole thing, to be honest.” “I think if we can maintain that, we can then help send more women to other Python-centric conferences,” said Lynn Root on the group’s efforts last year in funding trips for women to attend DjangoCon.
Cassell went on to say, “the Python community has been so welcoming and friendly that I can't really keep myself from not trying to get more women into our community. I really hope this money helps me, and my fellow PyLadies, be able to achieve that.”
“PyLadies as an organization, and an extension of the Python Software Foundation, has done amazing work for our community, making inroads in assisting women in technology. Myself and the entire PyCon team were honored to be able to have this event and raise this money to help the PyLadies outreach programs all over the world,” said conference chairman Jesse Noller.