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Born to fly in the digital world for more empowerment.

Born to fly in the digital world for more empowerment.
Digital voice of the empowered women
Inspire and empower other women through the digital tool

Women in India are the most powerful people. If they are united, they achieve many more things which are not possible otherwise. A nation is prospered when a woman of that country is given due respect and equal power. If she is treated properly and loved and respected well, she could achieve many more things not only for her family but also for the community.
Here we want women in every community to learn to use the Internet which is a powerful digital tool. If money can empower women to live independently, Internet can empower women to live co-operatively, relying on each other to draw strength, share information, and communicate effectively about anything in their community. They can many of their problems through sharing the information quickly and wisely.

We are addressing three questions about this tool in the hands of the women.
What tools, resources, and trainings would you like to have access to in order to feel more comfortable using the Internet?

We need to talk to the community and find out first the need for using the Internet. Students should be pressed in to taking a SURVEY to this effect. Small group of women can be categorized to inform them about the importance of Digital learning or digital connecting.
Find out how many are interested in getting connected with other people, we can identify community asset as to how many already have access to the internet facility etc. Is it possible for their children to teach their parents about the importance of the Internet usage.
What are the benefits of getting digitally connected, how to make it more popular through self help group. How often they can come together to organize such events to get them updated?.
What are the resources available in the local area to use the Internet, whether there is a strong tower, communication set up, Number of Laptops or computers available in that area, availability of current etc.

Those who want to be enrolled can be taught with local GIRL students of the locality. A small village can apply for funds to the local government to have computer central lab to house the computers with Internet

Every day time can be allotted to different groups for the access of the computer lab. If this is not possible, people can think of MOBILE COMPUTER LAB for using. The maintenance of the system should be looked after by the leader of the local group.

As everyone has cell phone, some time can be allotted to give them basic training in operating the computer. A local panchayath leader can call for a meeting once a month to identify the problems and the achievements that are attained by the group and can be fittingly rewarded for the same.
Have a local fund raising effect to get around 10 computers for a Mobile Set up.

What challenges do you, and women in your community, face when learning to use the Internet? How have you overcome them?

Most of the time there is no basic level co-operation. Women are not coming together and getting them together to learn is a big difficult task.
Most women complain about their time schedule and difficulties in learning. Some are quick in learning the new tools.
They have household chores to look in to and many go out for work in the field. So time is the major constraint for some women.
Women in the self help group can motivate more women than any other group. So using self help group women is a successful criterion in motivating the other women.
Awareness to the effect of using a new tool is actually not there.
Educating them through Street plays, TV ad, or a DOCU DRAMA can be used to overcome this problem.
We still feel more women can be enrolled in this group to achieve the goal.
Above all availability of CURRENT is the major problem.

Have you helped train others on Internet use and digital literacy? How did you do it?

We are not very successful in achieving this goal fully. But slowly we can try to focus on attaining the goal of making them to learn to use the Internet. Having a central computer facility is not a very viable project here, because of maintenance problems. We need local technical hands to get it set right every time anything happens to it.
Having a Mobile Computer Lab for every small pocket of villagers to use will be a great plan. Instead of appointing a single person to llok after it, unemployed youth can be pressed in the village service for a year or so and giving them the certificate would be a welcoming plan.
The village head can call for a meeting and each house can contribute something to get the Mobile Computer Center keep going would be worth experimenting.
Women’s leadership is the important step in women empowerment.

This story was written for World Pulse’s Women Weave the Web Digital Action Campaign. Learn more »

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Comments

Tam's picture

Tremendous plans

Hello Bubbleje,

With your opening words I felt an immediate connection to you, dear sister, recognizing and putting into words so well what can come of due respect and love for all women. It is so encouraging to read of your love of, and your belief in the power of women living freely.
Your entire piece is such a carefully done, complete look at projects that could transform the lives of many rural village girls. Your thought provoking details have created an important and excellent plan, starting with one very important suggestion: that the people of the community must be asked first as to what they want and need. This is a wise way to begin, as is your idea to train a small group of girls who then can provide leadership to others, developing self help networks.
Your whole plan is such a good one, Bubbleje, and I can imagine that the hurdles that you outline seem overwhelming at times, but I sincerely hope that you will not stop, and that you will find the first small group to work with, to energize and inspire each other, and to celebrate each small but significant victory. I look forward to following what you are doing.

With love in Sisterhood,

Tam

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