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AREAi wins 2022 ITU EqualsInTech Award in Geneva

Aid for Rural Education Access Initiative (AREAi) was recently announced as the Winner of the Research category of the annual EQUALS in Tech Awards at the 2022 Partner2Connect annual meeting at the International Telecommmunications Union (ITU) headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Education Digital Equity Initiative, a digital awareness and research initiative of AREAi was named one of the five winners of the 2022 Equals in Teach awards.

This award is a flagship initiative of the UN ITU EQUALS Global Partnership to Bridge the Gender Digital Divide, which recognises organizations and individuals working to help girls and women gain equal internet access, digital skills and opportunities within and beyond in the digital technology sector.

From a field of more than 150 nominees representing 54 countries, judges selected 15 initiatives as finalists in the categories of Access, Skills, Leadership in Tech, Leadership in SME, and Research. AREAi emerged the global winner in the Research category which spotlights the significance of initiatives working to expand the digital gender divide knowledge in support of evidence-based decision-making.

This category places emphasis on the role of knowledge development and mobilisation on the existence, causes, and remedies for gender tech inequalities, and on motivating key stakeholder groups, including private sector companies, government departments, regulatory agencies, and academia, to collect and share gender-relevant data.

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Therefore, this award was presented for the remarkable impact of the Education Digital Equity Initiative which was graciously funded under the Digital Access Program of the UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (UK FCDO).

Commenting on the feat, Gideon Olanrewaju, AREAi Founder and Chief Executive, said in a statement “I am pleased that we are being recognised with our work in bridging the digital gender divide through the harmonisation of the synergistic value of policy, research and practice. This is an acknowledgment of the powerful vision, significant impact, and local importance of the low-cost strategies we deploy in providing inclusive and high-quality educational connect and connecting beneficiaries to relevant digital skills development opportunities.”

“The Education Digital Equity Initiative is a collaborative effort between students, teachers, educational leaders, government stakeholders and thereby shows what partnership means in delivering a digitally equitable world where digital development is evidence-driven and research-based,” he added.

“AREAi remains committed to driving innovation actions under its Digital Equity portfolio to develop thought leadership, support strategic partnerships, and advocate for sustainable digital development that leaves no girl behind.”

Speaking on the 2022 winners, Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Secretary-General Elect of the International Telecommunication Union, noted “Every year, our EQUALS in Tech Award winners inspire us with the concrete, on-the-ground impact they are making in the lives of women around the world. These winners have set a shining example of how we can collaborate more effectively to bridge the digital gender divide.”