When we think of trend setters, technology and innovation, we generally don't think of Africa as a front runner.
But this couldn't be further from the truth.
Some facts for you:
- Africa has the highest rate of female entrepreneurs IN THE WORLD
- In Africa, ICT is helping women create, innovate and improve their economic and social outcomes
- Women are about 50% less likely to be connected than men in the same age group with similar levels of education and household income.
- Only a small minority of women Internet users surveyed are tapping into technology’s full empowering potential. Women are 25% less likely to use the Internet for job-seeking than men, and 52% less likely than men to express views online.
- Women who use the Web daily are three times more likely to use it to increase their incomes
This week, influential women from around the world are championing Africa's greatest and most precious resource - their female entrepreneurs.
As Cherie rightly points out, it is not enough to just give a girl a phone. You need to teach her how to use it, be inspired by it, earn through it and innovate with it.
These women are succeeding, often against huge odds. Their businesses are driving innovation and creating jobs for others in their communities. Their success is proof that Africa’s women have the capacity to transform not just their own lives, but the economic future of their countries.