Women In Tech Madagascar is an association led by 7 young women from the technology sector: Ursulla, Faneva, Rotsy, Fanaja, Haingo, Zo and Karen.
A community of mutual aid and support
They are students, professionals or even mothers. All of them are passionate about social, entrepreneurship, sports, hackathons and video games. Women In Tech Madagascar is first and foremost a team of women who are active and enthusiastic about helping their country and the ICT sector evolve.
“We are convinced that the field of ICT is a carrier of development for Madagascar, hence our dedication to its evolution. Our country is full of men and women whose talent is not exploited due to lack of support and we wish to be the support that is missing to all these passionate people.”
Women In Tech Madagascar wants to help Malagasy women to open up a little more to new technologies. To do this, they organize activities such as training in video game development. The association aims to help, support and encourage technology enthusiasts, but also to train and promote the employment of women in this sector.
“We would like Women In Tech Madagascar to be a community of mutual help and support that encourages women to be more interested and involved in the technology sector. Indeed, the proposed activities will allow both men and women to give their best, to be a source of innovation and development for the country”
An association that makes things happen
Founded in June 2016, Women In Tech Madagascar aims to:
- to defend the general interests of women in the ICT sector,
- to protect them against all forms of discrimination at work,
- to promote their integration into the professional world of this sector,
- to offer them a capital of experience and assets
- to encourage initiatives and projects in order to allow enthusiasts to participate in the fight against poverty.
Since its creation, the association has organized several events, including the “FOFAJA Hackathon” project. FOFAJA – Foibe Fanabeazana ny Jamba, dedicated to the education of blind children from 6 to 15 years in primary school. Five teams of enthusiasts from Antsirabe, Antananarivo and Fianarantsoa met at the FOFAJA Antsirabe centre on 14, 15 and 16 October 2016. Together, they developed a website for 48 hours without interruption, allowing them to publicize FOFAJA, but also to launch crowdfunding and fundraising campaigns for this center.
As part of the international Girls inICT day, celebrated every year on the fourth Thursday of April, Women In Tech Madagascar, in partnership with the NGO HAY Madagascar, has contributed by initiating young girls from public primary schools to Scratch. They were aged between 8 and 14 years old and were given a basic training in computer science, an initiation to Scratch and to playful programming in Malagasy. At the end of the day, each participant was able to create her own little program.
“Even today, people are still surprised that girls develop or play video games. When we communicated about our existence, our vision and our goals, of course, there were many surprised people, but we were surprised to see the enthusiasm and support from both women and men,” says Ratsisetraina Dina Valisoa, a member of the association.
For the years to come, Women In Tech Madagascar wishes to continue training for young and old. The association, which wishes to actively participate in the development of the ICT sector in Madagascar, is aware of the importance of introducing the digital world to the Malagasy people in order to encourage them to take an interest in it. She also wants to organize other hackathons to allow participants to express their creativity, but especially to prove what they are capable of.
Women In Tech Madagascar also states that it wants to organize awareness campaigns to encourage women to dare to undertake, to innovate, to be interested in ICT and to contribute to the development of this field in the country.