..as Founder addresses UN Commission on “Digital Skills and Gender Economic Inclusion”
..seeks developmental partners in digital space to invest in girls through BeMore
To really achieve equity and bridge gender gap in the digital space, there’s a need for concerted efforts to mainstream gender in technological innovation among secondary school girls.
The above assertion was of the First Lady of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, while addressing participants at the ongoing 67th Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, holding at the UN building, New York, USA.
Speaking on, “Digital Skills and Gender Economic Inclusion”, the Ondo First Lady affirmed that digital skills represented the contemporary compass needed by individuals to successfully sail through the emerging world.
Her words: “Through digital literacy, global and instant collaborations are at the tips of the fingers; just as higher bargaining powers are within reach. The skills help to catch up in the rapidly changing world to be technologically relevant and be economically viable”.
Commenting on the topic, the Founder of BeMore Empowered Foundation for Girls, affirmed that the topic was in relation with the vision of her Bemore initiative, a platform through which she has been promoting digital literacy among girls, by engaging them on a two week training in Solar technology and ICT.
She described the BeMore initiative as a proof that gender mainstreaming in technological innovation would help bridge gender gap in Science Technology and Mathematics, and has disproved the supposition that technological competencies are exclusively preserved for the male gender.
Mrs Akeredolu informed the participants that, the initiative, which was launched in 2017, was aimed at equipping girls with the knowledge in technology to facilitate their competitiveness in the global knowledge economy.
Her words: “The story of BeMore Summer Bootcamp 4 Girls Naija, a programme of BeMore Empowered Girls’ Foundation, the annual, all-girls, two-week summer boot camp training in ICT and Solar Technology for Nigerian secondary school girls, an evidence-based promoter of STEM, is an amazing narrative with impressive results.
We set out in 2017 with a VISION to build future female technology leaders and with a MISSION to bridge the gender gap in Science, Technology, Engineering Mathematics plus Entrepreneurship (STEM+E).
“So far, over 3,300 girls have gone through our programme, including those with hearing impairment. Not only did Bemore girls became digitally literate after camp, increasing number of girls are registered into STEM courses in Nigerian universities, with some becoming young business owners and award-winning young leaders, who are ready to take on challenges in their domains”.
Having informed the international community of the high probability of bridging gender gap in the digital space by training girls in technological innovations, which the Bemore initiative has proven, the Ondo First lady , therefore, called on development partners and other stakeholders in the digital space to invest in platforms like BEMORE, saying, “..which if maximized, will improve the economic worth of young Nigerian women on all counts”.
Story Credit: Mary Agidi
Special Assistant on Media
Office of Ondo State First Lady.
March 10th, 2023.