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I readily admit to being a tech geek; in fact for years my friends and colleagues would call me the gadget grrl because I loved to purchase the newest technology gadgets, learn how to use them and have everyone else learn as well. Technology, especially Web 2.0, has changed the way the world lives and has definitively changed the state of global education. One of the biggest concerns that I personally have is the continued expanse of the digital divide; the haves (largely in developed countries) have access to technology whereas the have nots are left in digital darkness. This divide does not only exist in developing countries, it exists here in the United States. Every semester I find more and more students who are unable to afford a computer or Internet access - this causes them to be left at the mercy of the computer room hours or a friend's offer of assistance. Unfortunately many of these students are young females who are single mothers; their situation has left them with little in the way of finances and while they are trying to better themselves they are left without access to the very technology they need to gain better jobs and security. Clearly technology can empower women by allowing them to further their education, gain important skills that will lead to jobs and self-improvement and allow for access to important information. However, the reality is that many women do not have access to technology and accordingly find themselves "left behind." In order for technology to change the lives of women, one must have access to it. Recently, I along with two colleagues founded WRITE Educational Foundation with the mission of "dumping the digital divide" across the globe. How? Simply by taking old computers which people discard, recycling them and disseminating them to people in need. Easy right? Let's take technolgy and use it for true change by insuring that all can gain the skills and information they need.

Take action! This post was submitted in response to Voices of Our Future Application: Empowerment and Web 2.0.

Comment on this Post


Wow! you guys are doing an amazing job.I completely endorse to the great digital divide that exists,in India, particularly , this is very stark.

Keep it going, let me know if I can help spread the word!!

Best Pinky


I would love to work with someone in India; right now we are only working in Africa. How could we work together?

Ellen Rosner Feig Assistant Professor, Composition and Literature Carl Wilkens Fellow, Genocide Intervention Network/Save Darfur


I have recently co-founded an NGO in New Delhi and we could together implement this in India.As of now are operations are limited within Delhi and its neighbouring states, but that in itself is a very large population to cater to.If you can mail me your approach in Africa, we could fine tune it for India.We could approach corporates, schools and other resources. To my mind there are a few NGOs who are already implementing this kind of program.

I am based in US right now and we could talk more on this. My email id is pinky.pradhan@gmail.com


I will email you the plan - right now I have a large community college that is the "sister school" in the states so we are always looking to add new schools.

Ellen Rosner Feig Assistant Professor, Composition and Literature Carl Wilkens Fellow, Genocide Intervention Network/Save Darfur

Technology has powerful impact on our lives, but in a country like Afghanistan people even do not understand what it means to be part of the world's networking by net. But we, Afghan women, have started it with Web 2.0. Thanks, Bests, Parwana Fayyaz.

I do agreed with your vision , friend because I sympathize them .I am also not perfect user in the internet and computer.I was born in the village and computer was boring machine , I thought before so that I usually laughed at by others when I asked them how to use computer but I tried read books and asked the ones who know about computer .Even now, I am still trying to use computer and internet because if I don't know anything , I can't lift up my community.

Best wishes, Zin Zar

Ellen, I could not agree more with what you say, specially since nowadays it is practically necessary to know how to use a computer in order to look for a job, since all of the job offers are made mostly through the internet, which means you need to have an email and basic internet knowledge. I also know of an initiative like yours called Kids on Computers, if im not mistaken it already exists in the US and also in Mexico. Maybe you could also contact them!

I salute you for all your efforts. As someone living in Africa, i really understand what you are talking about. There are women out there who have great potential but because they are technologically incapacitated, no-one will ever know what they had to offer. be blessed!

Thank you all for your wonderful comments - how can we, as powerful women, work together to help other women gain access? What can I do to help you?

Ellen Rosner Feig Assistant Professor, Composition and Literature Carl Wilkens Fellow, Genocide Intervention Network/Save Darfur

Gadget girl, recycling old computers? Wow, i thought i having been doing something, now am aware i haven't done jack! Well done and keep the god work...

I do not aim for Perfection; Just excellence!

Ha ha...we are all amazing, right? Women rock - especially when we work together.

Ellen Rosner Feig Assistant Professor, Composition and Literature Carl Wilkens Fellow, Genocide Intervention Network/Save Darfur

Hi Ellen,

Thanks for pointing out this issue about the technology divide. I currently work in an unemployment office, and am finding that most of the services provided are via the internet. People can no longer walk in and apply for a job, but they must email their resume or fill out an online application. This proves a challenge for those who have absolutely no computer experience, no email address set up, and a general lack of confidence with computers. I hope more can get general education regarding how to use web 2.0 in addition to access to computers and internet.