Posted by: maymaloney | October 18, 2010

Empowering Women through Mobile Phone Technology

Young women demonstrating the power of mobile technology

In February 2010, the Global Mobile Awards Company, in partnership with the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, identified a gender gap in mobile phone access in the developing world – 300 million less women than men own mobile phones and the potentially life changing tools that they can provide, such as access to health services, banking, employment opportunities and educational tools.

This corporate partnership has borne some interesting fruit and through an initiative now hosted at mWomen (http://www.mwomen.org/) a global programme has been launched to give women living on less than $2 a day access to mobile phones, at a reduced rate and with gender-friendly features.

A report undertaken as part of the project found that equal access to mobile phones has had interesting results for women in India and Sub-Saharan Africa. The report shows that:
93% of women reported feeling safer because of their mobile phone
85% of women reported feeling more independent because of their mobile phone
41% of women reported having increased income and professional opportunities once they owned a mobile phone
Women in rural areas and lower-income brackets stand to benefit the most from closing the gender gap
Across all countries a woman is 21% less likely to own a mobile phone than a man. This figure increases to 23% if she lives in sub-Saharan Africa, 24% if she lives in the Middle East and 37% if she lives in South Asia

The project also aims to create projects to educate men about the positive aspects of women owning a mobile phone.

Innovative, modern programming.

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