Empowered women empower women.

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As one of the winners in the first and then third rounds of the WomenConnect Challenge, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), AFCHIX is using community networks to help women in rural communities in Africa overcome the barriers that keep them from benefitting from the internet. WomenConnect is a global call for solutions to improve women’s participation in everyday life by meaningfully changing the ways women access and use technology.

As a winner in the first round of the Challenge, launched in 2018, AFCHIX worked with four rural communities in Kenya, Senegal, Namibia, and Morocco to install communications infrastructure and connect several schools and a limited number of households to the internet. We used a gender-sensitive approach and deliberately involved women as leaders in the design, installation, and maintenance of the networks.

Chosen as a winner of the third round of the Challenge in 2021, AFCHIX is currently working on a project, ‘Scaling up Women-Led Community Networks for Women’s Prosperity, to extend these networks. This project is adding to the infrastructure already installed in the four communities to extend internet access to more community members and continues to provide digital literacy and business skills training to empower them to use the internet to improve their lives.

Read more about AFCHIX Community Networks

Grace Hopper Celebration

The Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) was founded in 1994 to honour the legacy of Rear Admiral Grace Hopper and inspire future generations of women in tech. As the flagship event of, it brings the research and career interests of women in computing to the forefront and highlights the contributions of women to the tech world.

Through the support of our partners, several AFCHIX members have received financial support to attend the conference, which takes place in the United States every year. This experience has enabled our members to network with women in tech who are leaders in their respective fields representing industry, academia, and government and has given them valuable exposure to a global platform for knowledge-sharing, opportunities, and support.

Mentorship for High School Girls

AFCHIX’s work to inspire girls to take up careers in STEM includes hosting various events, celebrating International Girls ICT days, and conducting school visits to introduce high school girls to ICT fields of study and the different job opportunities the sector holds. Our programmes include sessions to educate girls about career possibilities in ICT and allow successful women in the sector to share their inspirational stories. We also provide sessions on life skills to help strengthen the confidence of girls in their own ability to succeed in any career of their choice.

AFCHIX has hosted over 6000 girls at its Annual Computer and Mentorship Career Workshop in Kenya. This event was hosted in collaboration with the Catholic University of Eastern Africa in Nairobi, Kenya and its Mathematics, Computer Science, and ICT Departments. In Uganda, over 10,000 female high school pupils and universities have benefitted from our mentorship and career guidance programs, seminars and International Girls in ICT Days events.

Training to Upskill Women in ICT

AFCHIX’s efforts to build the capacity of women network engineers in Africa started in 2006 through a collaborative initiative between LinuxChix Africa, the African Network Operators Group (AfNOG), and the Network Startup Resource Center (NSRC). 

This culminated in the inaugural Unix Administration Workshop which was held in Nairobi, Kenya in 2007. The aim of the workshop was to provide women network engineers with an opportunity to sharpen their skills in Unix System Administration and to increase opportunities for women to actively participate in other AfNOG activities. From 2007 to 2015, AFCHIX hosted a total of eight AfNOGChix training workshops across African countries including Ghana, Botswana, Malawi, and The Gambia. 

Over 200 women engineers have benefitted from this training, helping to build their technical skills in using the Unix System, as well as their capacity to take up leadership positions in their sector. The women trained during these sessions also went on to share the skills and knowledge they acquired with others in their home countries.