Libyan women took part in a competition in Tripoli giving them the skills and tools in ICT, in a bid to enhance their opportunity.
Ibtikar, the first Libyan social innovation competition specifically for women was held for three days between 13th-15th February in Tripoli.
The competition involved the participation of 16 young women aged 18-25 in learning how to use technological tools and design thinking techniques to find solutions for social problems.
The competition is part of REACH, a digital inclusivity project that aims to promote gender equality, empowerment and social and economic development in the country through equipping women with ICT skills to bridge the Libyan entrepreneurial gender gap.
Speaking about the importance of these initiatives, Hala Bughaghis, Director of Jusoor, said “We cannot afford to leave Libyan women behind and we must take urgent action to bridge the digital gender gap and work on shaping an inclusive digital future for Libya”.
During the 3 days the participants learned the benefit of using technology to build their projects in addition to creating products that are more inclusive of everyone in Libyan society.
“We are committed to supporting Libyan women’s advancement, to help them participate and to take advantage of their full role in building a Libyan future. And technology is a vital tool to assist in this” said Khadeja Ramali, Project Silphium Co-founder.
Four projects competed in the competition, three of them were projects designed to solve problems related to the health sector. The competition was judged by a group of technically qualified and experienced judges. The Smart Pharmacy project won the competition, but all participants had great entries and they were committed to pursue working on developing their projects.
Reach project is still ongoing and will host other similar events. Activities include working closely with competition participants to develop their project concepts. In addition, the project will help build a friendly and supportive community that will assist these women in having a bigger role in social entrepreneurship on the Libyan scene.
The event was hosted by Libyan NGOs Jusoor Center for Studies and Development collaborating with Elham company and Project Silphium. Sponsorship was generously provided by MEDA Libya.