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Inspiring Moments Working With Neurodiverse Youth

Written by: Mio Senzaki

Date: Feb 7, 2022

Bahar Moussavi, one of the founders of the CODE Initiative, reflects on a few personal stories that she herself has witnessed. They show the incredible social impact of these one-on-one coding classes for neurodivergent children.

One young boy with learning differences was not verbal, did not know how to use a computer, or what the concept of the computer was at the beginning. He would sit in the corner, not wanting to use the computer and then bang on it. But through the support that is tailored and captures his specific interests, Bahar and her team managed to get him to open the computer, learn how to log in, open the program, and eventually write code for an airplane to move across the screen. And he knew how to do it all independently!

Another boy who was very excited to attend the sessions from the beginning had different ways to improve. Throughout five sessions, he learned Python and improved so quickly that he began to learn what his teacher was learning in a university-level computer science class. Now, he can write his JavaScript and develop his own games.

A story of a boy who likes robots, told by a parent, sounds as inspiring as the others.

This boy has found his passion after introducing him to the classes to see if coding sparks his interests. As the instructor was trying to see if he would be interested in coding music, he became passionate about programming to animate creatures and control them with noises. This is all thanks to the private one-on-one classes that are very flexible and the fact that students can feel more comfortable with a teacher in personalized classes.

These arrangements, tailored to students’ interests, could be anything from creating Scratch games to Java, web development, processing, AI machine learning, music, and coding. Everyone can code and be good at it, and you have to find what you can excel at and learn it properly.


If you are interested in becoming a part of the CODE Initiative, there are many avenues. You can get involved as a parent or a student who wants to take classes. There are opportunities for volunteer or executive positions. Executives usually join as volunteers since the CODE Initiative is a non-profit organization, but you may get hired depending on the situation.

Because of Bahar’s and her colleagues’ beliefs and efforts to bring a systematic change, the organization now has nearly 700 students and has worked with about 700-800 volunteers.

C.O.D.E. INITIATIVE Opening Doors With Education.

The C.O.D.E. Initiative is a female-founded non-profit organization that stands for Creating Opportunities and Defining Education.

They are at the forefront of empowering youth, particularly neurodivergent and autistic youth, through tailored STEM workshops and coding classes. Founded in 2017, they have been providing accessible and inclusive learning opportunities to the neurodiverse community and amplifying the voices of individuals in our communities.

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