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Updated June 2006

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Since its first official activity in 1996, APC-Africa-Women has made impressive progress in raising African women’s awareness of ICTs, and in broadening the strategic use of ICTs by women in important social justice and development processes.

**Women’s Electronic Network Training (WENT Africa) Report. WENT built the capacities of 23 women and their organisations to utilize ICTs in social development work and policy advocacy. **

Examples of significant achievements include:


Networking for change and empowerment Forum – Catalysing a Gender and ICT Advocacy
The Forum was designed to provide a space where the APC WNSP can consolidate the growing gender and ICT advocacy network and focus greater attention on the need to locate gender issues at the center of all ICT policy and practice processes. It also developed strategies and resources to sustain this network over the longer term and enable it to have greater impact.

In partnership with IDRC, AAW co-hosted a workshop to establish a research proposal and an ICT and gender research network. Participants at the workshop established the Gender Research in Africa on ICTs for Empowerment network (GRACE) and will begin implementing research on “How is the use and appropriation of ICTs by women in Africa transforming their lives?” in 11 African countries.

APC Africa ICT Policy Monitor Project commissioned AAW to write an in-depth research paper on “The Role of ICTs in the Development of African Women”. Soon to be published online at:

E-consultation on “ICTs for the advancement of rural women’s empowerment: Strategies, platforms, tools and training”. The e-consultation increased the number of voices in the FAO/Women’sNet/DIMITRA workshop on advancing rural women’s empowerment and widened the space for dialogue and sharing of experiences, information and resources.

The production of three issues of PULA, an e-newsletter on women and ICTs in Africa. Pula promotes and profiles the work of women’s initiatives in Africa and links women to each other and to opportunities.

Women’s Electronic Network Training (WENT) Africa 2003. WENT built the capacities of 23 women and their organisations to utilize ICTs in social development work and policy advocacy.

World Summit on the Information Society Summit, December 2003. AAW hosted a panel on “Free and Open Source Software (FOSS): The potential power and possibilities for women’s organizations and networks”.

GEM presentations at various workshops including a UNIFEM-hosted “Regional Training Workshop on Monitoring and Evaluation: Gender, Human Rights and Participatory Approaches”.

Multiple presentations and an AAW face-to-face meeting at the Kampala Know How Conference.

AAW participation and presentation on gender at the first Africa Civil Society and ICT Policy workshop in Ethiopia.

African Gender Evaluation Methodology workshop in Zanzibar.

Intersections: A bulletin on gender at the World conference Against Racism (Durban, South Africa). The bulletin highlighted the intersection between race and other forms of oppression with gender.

2000 – present:
GEM is a guide to integrating gender analysis into evaluations of initiatives that use ICTs for social change. AAW is leading its testing in Africa

Flamme/Beijing+5 initiative: information and training activities implemented in partnership with FEMNET to support the participation of African women’s NGOs in the global Beijing +5 review, June 2000.

Publication and dissemination of “Net Gains: African Women take stock of Information and Communication Technologies”, a groundbreaking research report on the situation and needs of African women with respect to ICTs.

Multiple contributions to Women in Sync, a collection of stories and experiences of women and organisations and their successes and challenges in women’s networking initiatives, published by the global APC Women’s Networking Support Programme (APC-WNSP) to encourage and support women’s electronic networking

APC-Africa-Women Activities:

WENT Africa 2005
22 women participants from 12 African countries, 4 participants and 1 facilitator – that’s the mix for WENT Africa 2005 being held in Kampala. Women from Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Uganda, Cameroon, Zambia, Sudan, Cameroon, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Ghana and Senegal are participating in the second WENT Africa workshop being hosted by APC-Africa-Women. The morning of day 1 was spent with introductions and expectations as well as formal welcomes by the workshop hosts and partners. APC-Africa-Women as convenor welcomed participants. Partners WOUGNET, Women’sNet, Isis-WICCE, Linux Chix Africa and Bellanet-Africa said words of welcome and support. HIVOS was acknowledged and thanked as the donor and partner who made the workshop possible.


FOSS SADC Workshop hosted by Women’sNet


Networking for Change and Empowerment Forum
Catalysing a Gender and ICT Advocacy Movement. June 1-7 2004, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The Forum is designed to provide a space where the APC WNSP can consolidate the growing gender and ICT advocacy network and focus greater attention on the need to locate gender issues at the center of all ICT policy and practice processes. It will also develop strategies and resources to sustain this network over the longer term and enable it to have greater impact.

Through a mix of experience-sharing, dialogue, networking and skills-building, the Forum comprises five major activity components that will further build on the gender and ICT agenda that has been discussed and developed through a series of NGO and UN conferences since 1995. These include the UNWCW (95), the Global Knowledge Partnership conferences (97/2000), the Global Conference of Networking Partnership (1999/2000), Beijing+5 review (2000), Association of Women in Development Conference (2000), Commission on the Status of Women (2001, 2002, 2003), the GKP Global Forum on ICT and Gender (2003) and the UNDAW Meetings which advise the UN General Assembly.

The Forum will bring together both women and men that have worked in the gender and ICT area in the past decade. It will provide a much needed space to build on the momentum created during the first phase of the WSIS (World Summit on the Information Society) and prepare a strategic approach and plan for the second phase of WSIS and other ICT policy arena including the Beijing +10 process, the world and regional social forums (WSF), the WTO and other relevant processes.


NGO Gender Strategies Working Group
The NGO Gender Strategies Working Group was formed at the first WSIS PrepCom Meeting in Geneva in July 2002 as one of the sub-committees of the Civil Society Coordinating Group (CSCG). The groups involved in this effort are: the African Women’s Development and Communications Network (FEMNET), Agencia Latino Americana de Informacion, Association for Progressive Communication-Women’s Networking Support Programme, International Women’s Tribune Centre, and Isis International-Manila.

PULA – an e-newsletter on African Women and ICTs
Newsletter of the Association for Progressive Communications Africa Women (APC-Africa-Women). Pula aims to promote and profile the work and activities of women’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) initiatives in Africa and to act as a communicative tool to link women to each other and to initiatives and opportunities.

WENT Africa 2003
WENT Africa 2003 was organised and hosted by APC-Africa-Women and held in Cape Town, South Africa from 29th March to 4th April 2003. 24 women participated, including a team of experienced women ICT trainers.

“Logiciels libres : quels enjeux pour les femmes africaines ?”
Rapport d’atelier organisé à l’occasion de la Journée Internationale de la Femme, 7 mars 2003, (Centre de Ressources pour l’Emergence Sociale Populaire, CRESP, Dakar)

L’atelier “Femmes et société de l’information”
L’atelier “Femmes et société de l’information” (Bordeaux, France, 28-29 avril 2003) organisé par l’INTIF (Agence Intergouvernementale de la Francophonie) dans le cadre du processus de consultation engagé par la Francophonie pour préparer le Sommet Mondial sur la Société de l’Information, a fait l’analyse de genre des enjeux et stratégies des femmes francophones dans la société de l’information : les infrastructures comme pré-requis pour l’accès universel à l’information et au savoir ;
la diversité culturelle et linguistique ; la démocratie, la bonne gouvernance et la paix ; le renforcement des capacités ;
le rôle des médias. (Rapport de synthèse en format Word)

01/30/2003 – Site Web du Groupe Stratégique des ONG pour le Genre du SMSI
Pour faciliter les échanges virtuels, le Groupe Stratégique des ONG a lancé un site web simple permettant de rassembler les informations sur le SMSI.

Africa ICT Policy Monitor Project
Mobilising African civil society around the importance of ICT policy for the development of the continent.

Internet Rights
APC has long been in the forefront of campaigning for the Right to Communicate and the right of people and organisations to have free and affordable access to the Internet. It has provided resources and training to support strategic use of the Internet, and helped those who do not have ready access to traditional media to make themselves heard using the Internet. APC has played a vital role in expanding use of the Internet in the less developed countries and its Women’s Programme (APC-WNSP) has led the way in redressing gender inequalities in the design, implementation and use of electronic communications.

It is becoming clear that securing the Internet as a space for open debate and discussion will require hard work, and collaborative action with the many other organisations and
individuals that are confronting this challenge.

In its work for an open, affordable and accessible Internet, APC will continue to adopt an integrated approach to the variety of issues involved in this area: access, cost, Internet governance, ownership and control, freedom of expression and privacy. Our Europe, Africa and Latin American projects will address all these and other issues, but will also reflect the different contexts and priorities of each region.


APC Women’s Networking Support Programme
APC-Africa-Women is the Africa regional programme of APC’s Women’s Networking Support Programme (APC WNSP). We will be paricipating in activities at a local and global level with the WNSP.


Gender Evaluation Methodology
The Gender Evaluation Methodology (GEM) for ICT initiatives and ICT evaluation is an innovative gender analysis tool produced by the APC Women’s Networking Support Programme (APC WNSP) for practitioners who share a commitment to gender equality and women’s empowerment in ICTs. Created in 2001, 2002-3 will see the field-testing and refining of GEM, as it is used to evaluate 30 projects from Latin America, Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.

GEM aims to strengthen and sustain gender accountability in global, regional and national ICT networking initiatives by developing evaluation methodologies, generating research on the gender dimensions of ICT development and catalysing a process of resource sharing and tools-building in gender evaluation through collaboration.

For more information on GEM in Africa, contact Fatma Alloo email [email protected]

World Summit on the Information Society: Gender Caucus
APC-Africa-Women is participating in the WSIS Gender Caucus as one of the organisations that responded to an invitation by UNIFEM to ensure that gender dimensions are included in the process of defining and creating a global information society that contributes to sustainable development and human security.

APC-Africa-Women attended the African Regional meeting of the WSIS and, with other members of the Gender Caucus, prepared a Statement of Gender and the WSIS.

Activities related to the WSIS are ongoing.

Women and Media for Social Change
Advances in technology over the past two decades have brought information to the most isolated regions. Media convergence allows the dissemination of the same news in various forms (print, radio, television, Internet). But the gross of the information that is disseminated across the planet is commercial and standardized, designed to maximize investor’s profits and insensitive to social justice and equity.
Women across the world, concerned with the impact of media on their lives, insisted in 1995 that the United Nations make media a critical area of concern.

This book (and web site) gives an overview of the progress made in the media landscape in the six years that followed the United Nations Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995 and highlights the obstacles encountered by women in each world region.

Faced with media that makes so little place for them, women have developed strategies to produce information that is balanced and representative, to claim their place and to present new voices and new images: a newspaper in Haiti, multimedia books for rural African women, a feminist press agency in Mexico, community
radio in East Timor, interactive television in France, journalist networks in the Middle East, an Internet network for peace in Macedonia. This book is a journey through the world of women’s accomplishments in the field of media, accomplishments that point the way to making
information accessible.


Flamme – Beijing+5 in Africa
Flame serves as an electronic forum for women to share and exchange ideas, strategies, information and issues of concern to impact on the implementation of the Beijing platform for action.

Flame is a network of African sisters online committed to strengthening the capacity of women through the use of ICTs to lobby, advocate and participate in the Beijing +5 process regionally and globally.

At the time of the 5th Regional Conference on Women (Dakar, 1994) Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) as an issue and as a tool for women’s agenda was almost ignored. ICTs for women was highlighted in the Beijing Conference, but poorly at the African level. Since then, the context of ICTs in Africa has evolved a lot, and different initiatives have been set up for women in the field of ICTs in Africa.

The FLAME/FLAMME: Sisters On-Line Website was developed by 12 committed women’s NGOs to meet this need.

Members of AAW put together an online and printed bulletin on gender at the World conference Against Racism in Durban South Africa. The bulletin, called Intersections, aimed to highlight the intersection between race and other forms of oppression with gender. Members of AAW contributed to the bulletin as well as activists attending the summit.