‘500 Women in Tech’ project: New opportunities for girls living in the Kakheti region
The share of women employed in information and communications technology (ICT) in Georgia is 12 per cent, and only 15 per cent of the graduates of the relevant faculties are girls. The ICT sector in Georgia, like in the rest of the world, is stereotypically considered to be a ‘man’s business’, which prevents women from choosing their desired career and employment in high-paying positions.
UN Women, with the support of the Norwegian Government and in partnership with the private sector, is actively working to increase the involvement of girls in technology. Part of this effort is the “500 Women in Tech” project, which has been implemented since 2021 in cooperation with Business and Technology University (BTU) and partner companies in the ICT industry. It involves free training for 500 women across the country in popular ICT professions. Participants undergo a six-month training course, after which the project offers them an internship and employment.
It is noteworthy that with the help of this project, girls in the regions also get new opportunities. The main aim of the meeting between the UN Women and BTU representatives and the participants living in Kakheti, which took place at the Telavi Technopark, was to share their impressions. Helene Sand Andresen, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Kingdom of Norway to Georgia, also attended the event.
“It is a great honour for me to be in Telavi within the framework of the project ‘500 Women in Tech’, which the Norwegian Government implements together with UN Women,” Ms. Andresen remarked at the meeting. “For us, for Norway, it is very important to eliminate the shortcomings that exist in terms of women’s participation in technology, because the equal involvement of women and men in this field is very important for economic development.”
A total of 30 girls from Kakheti participated in the first two rounds of the “500 Women in Tech” project. They studied different directions according to their own choice. In addition, within the framework of the project, the girls took intensive English language courses, a career bootcamp and seminars on entrepreneurship, in addition to completing practical tasks and even participating in individual mentoring. Several participants also presented their own initiatives at the meeting held at Technopark.
“With this project, I studied graphic design and found a new desired job,” remarked participant Nutsa Svanidze. “I gained such experience that I would not be able to get anywhere else. I want to continue my work in this field.”
“500 Women in Tech” is part of the women’s economic empowerment component of the project “Good Governance for Gender Equality in Georgia”, which is implemented by UN Women with the support of the Government of Norway.