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Gender and ICT Training for Planning and Organizational Development
Taida Horozovic | 24 September 2005


In early September, a Gender and ICT (Information Communication Technology) training was held in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), and organized by Unimondo – a regional web portal that promotes civil society in South East Europe and Foundation CURE – a feminist activist group that promotes and advocates gender equality in BiH and the world.


The objectives of the training were to open discussion about Gender and Information Communication Technologies (ICTs), provide support to NGOs so that they begin using and/or advancing their usage of the Internet as a strategic tool, and to explore possibilities for creating a platform of action through policy and advocacy in the domain of Gender Equality and ICT in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The overarching goal was to share and promote mechanisms provided by the Internet to spark positive social changes – closer to a just BH society.

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The training was designed to give an overview of the basic concepts of Gender and ICTs, and through interactive workshops, short lectures, exercises, and work on the Internet, the participants had an opportunity to learn and share knowledge in a dynamic and diverse environment. Training offered both theory and practice, and the practical sessions included visiting successful examples of how the Internet can and ought to be used as a strategic tool in the work of NGOs, or rather in the process of increasing expedience, effectiveness and visibility of their work.

As an illustration of simple and useful tools for online publishing, we visited the WITT site, and demonstrated usage of its Content Management System (CMS) - SPIP. Other sites we visited and promoted include Association for Progressive Communications (APC) and some of its powerful projects such as GenderIT, ITrainOnline, and numerous other links.

Organizers of this training put in much effort to create and provide as many useful materials as possible, and the material packages include and recommend the already existing Gender and ICT processes online. Up to 90% of the materials are in the local, Bosnian language.

Most of the participants’ organizations have web sites, but almost none of them use CMS, or provide regular updates. More importantly, most of them were not planning to develop information management in the sense of producing and disseminating information. As a follow up to the training, many would like to learn more about writing for the Internet, and how to use free software to advance their online presence and decrease their workload for media and public relations.

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writing execise
participants were asked to review a newspaper text, and respond about whether the language used is gender sensitized.

Ten participants from six BiH towns attended the training, representing women’s organizations that fight violence against women (through research, advocacy, safe houses/shelters, therapies with survivors, activism, and other), youth organizations (creative development-through arts and audio/video production, promoting BiH successful young people through projects and campaigns), an organization that promotes and protects the rights of LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, intersexual and queer) persons, and a community radio organization.

A training using the same module sessions will be organized again before the end of 2005, as many other organizations from the entire BiH expressed their interest in attending.





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