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USAID has officially opened applications to WomenConnect Challenge. The challenge is geared towards finding global solutions that will meaningfully bridge the gap between access and use of technology between men and women.

The challenge will be receiving applications through to May 4. Through this challenge, USAID aims at identifying and accelerating solutions that will empower women and girls. Solutions that steer women and girls into a future of STEM in education and/or careers.

This challenge is open to organizations registered in the U.S. and outside. The winners of the challenge will be expected to use the fund to implement the solutions they conceived in bettering their country where USAID is present. In a statement, USAID said:

Technology is revolutionizing the world by providing tools for entrepreneurship, access to critical health and education, and life-enhancing information. Today, 1.7 billion women in low- and middle-income countries still do not own mobile phones, and the gap between the number of men and women using the internet has grown steadily over the past three years, resulting in a digital gender divide.

This digital gender divide is reinforcing or even exacerbating existing socio-economic gaps between men and women. By reducing this divide, women and girls will have access to information, networks, and services, driving inclusive economic growth and accelerating poverty alleviation.”

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