ITU and UN Women recently announced the Miss.Africa Digital, a program of DCA Trust, as one of the 15 finalists and among the possible winners of this year’s EQUALS in Tech Awards.
As one of the events in the EQUALS global network partnership, the annual awards event is designed to showcase how ICTs can be used to dramatically improve social, political and economic outcomes for women and girls – and the value that women and girls bring to the technology sectors.
“ITU is proud to recognize those honored here today who are dedicated to bridging the global digital gender divide,” said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. “Their drive, passion and innovation help to unleash the power of information and communication technology for the benefit of the many. Each time we bring more women and girls online, not only do we take one more step towards achieving gender equality, but we accelerate the implementation of all the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.”
In her video address to attendees, Amina J. Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General, said: “New tech needs to be available to all for the benefit of all, our sustainable future depends on bridging the digital gender divide. Let’s work together to empower role models who can inspire women and girls everywhere.”
The awards are part of the EQUALS Global Partnership, a network of more than 50 partner companies and organizations working together to bridge the digital gender divide, and co-founded by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), UN Women, the International Trade Centre, GSMA and the United Nations University and hosted by IGF.
The 2017 Equals in Tech Awards ceremony was held in Geneva, Switzerland, during the Internet Governance Forum, on December 19, 2017. This year’s awards were supported by the Internet Society, the Government of Switzerland and Facebook.
This year, there were 293 participants from 72 countries for the EQUALS in Tech Awards. From the list, 15 finalists were selected representing the most innovative and inspiring initiatives that have realized significant results in working to bridge the digital gender divide as well as bring digital tech opportunities. The initiatives have brought real change in the communities that they serve and have opened up doors for women to critical digital financial and social benefits.
Prizes are awarded for outstanding achievement and innovative strategies in 3 categories: SKILLS, ACCESS and LEADERSHIP. Nominations in the ‘SKILLS’ category support the development of women and girls in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills. Miss.Africa Digital (profiled here) is the only African organization to be named a finalist in the SKILLS category for the Equals in Tech Awards.