USAID’s ‘WomenConnect Challenge’ Seeks Solutions to Help Women & Girls Access Technology

Technology is revolutionizing the world by providing tools for entrepreneurship, access to critical health and education, as well as life-enhancing information, and yet women increasingly have limited access to technology, resulting in a ‘digital gender divide’. This brings up the WomenConnect challenge by the USAID – seeking global solutions that can meaningfully change the ways women and girls can access and use technology to bridge the Digital Gender Divide.

“We’re looking to identify and accelerate comprehensive solutions that empower women and girls to access and use digital technology to drive positive health, education, and livelihoods outcomes for themselves and their families,” USAID writes.

According to USAID, 1.7 billion women in low- and middle-income countries still don’t own mobile phones, and the gap between the number of men and women using the internet has grown steadily over the past three years.

Washington, D.C-based Aid Agency; USAID calls for applications for its WomenConnect Challenge. The challenge is open to registered U.S or non-U.S organizations regardless of type, with all applicants required to use WomenConnect funds to implement a solution in a country with a USAID presence.

The main themes:

  1. Women’s access to technology is not an end, but a means to help address development objectives.
  2. There is a need to build evidence for approaches that are working.
  3. The scope of the digital gender divide requires local solutions that take into account complex cultural and socioeconomic factors.

Interested applicants (FOLLOW THE LINK) can submit their applications not later than May 4 at 12:00 p.m ET (7:00 p.m East African Time).

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