NGO GSWG  
We thank the
Ford Foundation
for support in our ongoing work in this area.

The Beijing Platform for Action Meets the World Summit on the Information Society

1. CONNECTING WSIS POLICY WITH POVERTY IN THE BPFA

BPFA STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES

1. Develop economic policies and development strategies that address the needs of poor women.

2. Change laws and practices to ensure women's equal rights and access to economic resources

3. Give women access to savings and credit.

4 Develop gender-based methodologies and do research on the feminization of poverty.

ICT POTENTIAL:

Women are creating easy to use multimedia electronic information resources for women who are minimally literate. These new resources enable women to access information on such issues as ideas for earning money, in their own time, in their own language, and at their own pace.

Research findings and "how to" activities on water-use issues is being made available electronically to rural women in a multimedia format using both CD ROMs and websites.

Training in video technology and radio broadcasting is enabling women living in poverty to document their situations as they see it. These documentaries are then broadcast to the public, governments and other organizations as part of a strategy to pressure for action.

WHAT GENDER ADVOCATES ARE FIGHTING FOR IN THE WSIS POLICY DOCUMENTS

Eradication of poverty based on sustainable economic growth, social development, environmental protection and social justice requires the involvement of women in economic and social development, equal opportunities and the full and equal participation of women and men as agents and benificiaries of people-centred sustainable develpoment.

Use of ICTs and the internet has become a powerful and widespread information and communication platform that could be used as an enabling tool for socal development. Even as basic access to ICTs has increased in urban centres, its expansion and use as a medium for equitable social development could seriously be undermined by its increasing commercialization, corporate ownership and control.

In and of themselves, ICTs cannot create gender equality or end poverty, but they can be tools for social action and positive social change

 

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