National

All set for commemoration of International Girls in ICT

Stakeholders in technology and gender say all is set for the 2023 commemoration of the International Girls in ICT Day slated for April 27 in Blantyre.

The commemoration which will be held under the theme: Digital Skills for Life is targeting women and girls from different sectors.

In an interview with Malawi News Agency (MANA), spokesperson for the organisers, Chimwemwe Kaonga said commemoration will also interrogate the position of the gender digital gap in Malawi and how to promote Science, Technology and Mathematics (STEM) subjects among girls.

The “We want to share the common understanding that digital transformation provides new avenues for the empowerment of women and girls. However, discrimination, negative stereotypes and social cultural biases create challenges for women and girls to strive in a highly digital economy and society,” said Kaonga.

This year’s commemoration will launch Her Tech Magazine which has profiled a number of women who have made strides in the area of STEM.

Kaonga: these fields are male-dominated

Kaonga added that these fields are male-dominated and most girls lack role models in STEM hence the launch of magazine so that as a girl child reads it, she should be inspired and motivated to pursue a similar field.

President for Information, Communications and Technology Association of Malawi (ICTAM), Clarence Gama said it is a good initiative as women are often underrepresented in this field which can result in missed opportunities for both individuals and the industry as a whole.

“This will help increase diversity in the ICT industry, leading to a more creative and innovative workforce and is particularly important in developing countries like Malawi where access to technology and digital skills can be limited for girls due to cultural and societal norms,” said Gama.

The commemoration is being organised by Her for Tech, Women for Social Change (W4SC), Centre for Governance and Leadership (CEGOL), Sparc Systems Limited, Inq. Digital Malawi and Times Group.

The International Girls in ICT Day was designated in 2011 by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), an agency of the United Nations.

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