Report from the ICT Training for Bulgarian Women

This report is based on the experience from the ICT Training for Bulgarian Women from NGOs, which took place from July 31st to August 2nd, 2004 in Sofia, Bulgaria. This report icludes:

Aim and Goal of the training
Acheived results
Main challenges and conlusions

The ICT Training for Bulgarian Women from NGOs took place on July 31st - August 2nd, 2004 in a computer room in Sofia, Bulgaria. There were 11 participants, 7 of which took part in a WiTT training for the first time. Most of them were women from Sofia, only two of them were activists from the Red Cross in Plovdiv.

Paricipants 1
The selection of the participants was made strategically in order to create a core team of ICT literate women, who are aware of the needs and who feel comfortable with using computers, software, SPIP and Free Software applications.

Aim of the training

The aim of the training was to provide local Bulgarian women with more practical ICT skills so that they use computer resources in their everyday life more effectively.

Goals of the training

The main goals we had were:
* to convince women from Women rights NGOs about the importance of having and updating their website, and also to learn how to do so.

* to teach the political reasons for NGOs to use Free Software, and to feel more comfortable with using it.

* to help women get some new skills connected to computer use and the www (search engines, virus protection and protection of privacy etc.)

Acheived results

* active participation of the women and new skills obtained

* enhanced understanding of the problems

* raised awareness about the threats and opportunities that computers provide

* information about the training was published in the Bulgarian newspaper Computers, the discussion in the Linux

* Bulgaria portal raised great interest in the topic ("Women working with ICTs and Free Software")

* women from GERT have started updating their website themselves.

* new contacts made with a number of enthusiastic women from Sofia and all around Bulgaria (we got more than 10 additional requests for participation except the ones who were trained).

* new documentation on the use of SPIP, and the use of websites as a whole was published and released – for general knowledge and further use in Bulgarian language.

* the training helped the WiTT trainers from Bulgaria to work together for the second time, which made the team stronger and more enthusiastic.


Main challenges and conclusions

Because of the large number of women from Sofia and the countryside, who are willing to learn more about ICTs, we came to the conclusion that more trainings have to be organised. Another thing is that more training sessions with less participants are more useful than one big training with many participants. Education is more effective when each participant has a computer.

An interesting observation is that women like to improve their ICT skills due to practical reasons. That is to say that for most women – activists ICTs are seen only as a practical tool for achieving better results in their work. It was also interesting to note that women of middle age are more interested to improve their ICT skills than younger ones. Finally, women, working in a Free Software environment progress very quickly, and adapt very well to the software and the requirements.
Publication date: 
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Year of publication: 
2004

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