Understanding and Access Sustainability: From Pilot Programme to Technology for Women’s Empowerment Programme

Sustaining participant’s understanding gained in the pilot programme originally relied on the manuals we created, which provided picture-based explanations of the concepts the women learned. Throughout the programme, it was made evident that consistent access to not only computers, but to all types of technology, for skills practice was necessary. A partner organization of Sizakuyenza, Blue Sky Recycling, gave us three computers to refurbish that we made available to the WNG by leaving them in the Inyanda Youth Network Shipping Container. These computers became the beginning of the Technology for Women’s Empowerment Programme, which we sought to extend through a funding proposal to a European Union sub-grant for women’s empowerment programs. This application seeks money for more computers, maintenance, space rental, and salaries for a peer teachers from the pilot program to continue training members of the WNG. This programme will provide opportunities for peer teachers and pilot trainees to become leaders of the center, running the training programs and providing opportunities for members of the WNG to type their CVs and search for jobs online.

The proposal included:

  • A vision as seen by our co-researchers, the Sizakuyenza management team, and ourselves:

Our vision for this programme is that women will be empowered through the development of technological skills and see the opportunity to build upon the strength of women in family, community, and wider society.  This can open new opportunities for them economically and as individuals and leaders in South Africa’s social transformation.

  • A plan for implementation with comprehensive schedules


  • A two-year budget


A full version of this proposal can be found here.

Initially, we expected that the technology learning would be used mainly to build an asset map for Sizakuyenza. However, as the the plan for the map changed, the women showed an increasing interest in the learning aspect of the project. Through this, it became evident that the programme could develop far beyond our time here. Writing this proposal turned our seven week programme into a sustainable plan for increasing access and understanding at the same time for the members of the WNG.