Global Fund for Women created IGNITE: Women Fueling Science and Technology in order to dig more deeply into an issue that we know affects women and girls around the world. IGNITE has highlighted unheard stories about women and girls in technology, shown the impact of equal access to technology for women and girls, and made the case for using technology as a tool to build a more equal world.
Here are five lessons we’ve learned about how technology can build gender equality.
- Get women and girls involved in the global technology revolution. Technology is a women’s human rights issue. Read this call to action from our CEO Musimbi Kanyoro, and then join us as we imagine a future where women are given equal access to – and control of – technology.
- Change the story – celebrate women in leadership. Women are already leading the way when it comes to scientific and technological progress—you can meet dozens of them, past and present, in our #BetheSpark Gallery.
- Get girls started early. In our International Girls Hackathon #HackGirlsRights, we met girls who use their skills and imaginations to create technology solutions to issues that matter most to them. These girls know tech and aren’t afraid to use it to build a better future.
- Get everyone involved. Throughout IGNITE, we partnered with incredible organizations around the globe, including UN Women on our #BetheSpark petition to end the gender technology gap. With signatures from 182 countries around the world, we met–and exceeded–our goal of 20,000 people supporting greater access to and control over technology for the world’s women and delivered this message to the leaders at the UN.
- Find and support Changemakers. The good news is, there are so many women and organizations already using technology as a tool to reach gender equality. We’ve highlighted the work of incredible organizations around the world who are creating change on the ground, from the Argentinian group ACCT that is tracking disappeared women and girls who fall victim to human trafficking, and Liga-Inan in Timor-Leste that uses SMS-text messaging to improve maternal and child health in rural communities.
We asked you to imagine a future where women and girls have equal access to and control over technology. Right now, we believe that that future is closer than ever before. The stories and experiences included in IGNITE have catalyzed Global Fund for Women to redouble our own commitment to increasing women and girls’ access to and control of technology. We have created a Technology Fund, aimed to help women around the world use technology as a tool to build power and drive action, increase women’s access to and control of technology, and help grassroots organizations use technology to advance women’s and girls’ human rights. We hope you will join us in making sure technology access is not a privilege of a few, but a right held by all.
Thank you for taking this journey with us!