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‘Girls Got IT’ takes over Akkar, bringing digital future to young females [EN/AR]

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Akkar’s young, aspiring female community took part in the ‘Girls Got IT’ event, a joint Initiative between five Lebanese NGOs, led by Lebanese League for Women in Business (LLWB) in collaboration with the Lebanese Ministry of Education and Higher Education,in partnership with UNICEF and funded by the Kingdom of Netherlands. The University of Balamand- Issam Fares Faculty of Technology at their Baino-Akkar campus, welcomed hundreds of female students, who participated in hands-on activities and to learn more about the future of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Many influential speakers inspired the girls and shared their knowledge on the topics.

“We have chosen Akkar to host this event, as part of the ‘Girls Got IT’ mission to create more opportunities and augment the spirit of fair participation for those in the Northern Lebanon area,” said Ms. Asmahan Zein, President of the LLWB. With the support of UNICEF Youth Strategy, a uniquely designed skills building program was introduced to 100 girls from Lebanese and Syrian communities.

“The main goal of ‘Girls Got IT’, one of the initiatives UNICEF supports through its Youth Innovation Labs programme, is to promote digital literacy amongst young girls by introducing them to various careers and enriching their knowledge and developing their skills in digital and STEM fields, thus bridging the gender gap,” said UNICEF Representative Tanya Chapuisat.

‘Girls Got IT’ a joint Initiative between five Lebanese NGOs, led by Lebanese League for Women in Business. The aim of the five collaborating NGOs, which are the Lebanese League for Women in Business (LLWB), Arab Women in Computing (ArabWIC), Women in Technology (WIT), Women in Engineering (WIE) and Digital Opportunity trust (DOT), is to grant female students in Lebanon the experience of testing the latest innovations in technology.

The speaker lineup kicked off with a welcome note by Ms. Khoury the PR Manager at University of Balamand- Issam Fares Faculty of Technology, and included local entrepreneurs with countless years of experience in the IT and engineering fields such as Najwa Sahmarani, from the Tripoli Entrepreneur Club, Dr. Walid Dagher from Balamand University, Mohamad Merheb, founder of Siraj and an active worker in AgriTech, and the regional leader for Microsoft, Leila Serhan was also in attendance and speaking in Akkar.

The skills being taught and developed through the ‘Girls Got IT’ program aim to make young females better qualified for job positions and increase their experience in the STEM fields.The Girls Got IT program is also involved in the startup ecosystem currently present in Akkar. The event creates a forum for communication and the sharing of ideas on how to further develop the project. Entrepreneurs and tech specialists from Akkar are also using the program to share their knowledge by speaking at the GGIT conference.

“Girls Got IT, being in the heart of Akkar and in various cities across Lebanon, will benefit the entire community and narrows the gender gap in the Information Technology world,” added Ms. Zein, further commenting that “Our aim is to empower the youth, providing unique opportunities, and raise awareness on the startup ecosystem in Akkar.”

For more information, visit http://www.girlsgotit.org/

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Amira Alameddine
Communication Officer I Private Partnerships and Youth Engagement
+961 1 75 75 16 I +961 3 922 332 I aalameddine@unicef.org

United Nations Children’s Fund I Gefinor, Block E, Beirut, Lebanon Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and at http://www.unicef.org/lebanon/