Promoting digital resilience for women and girls across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)
[email protected] (“Salamat”) is helping MENA women use new digital technologies to improve their lives—safer from hacking, harassment, scams, blackmail, theft, gender-based violence and other digital harms.
Since 2019, we’ve been most active in Algeria, Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia. Stakeholders in Egypt, Iraq, Palestine and Yemen have also adapted our materials for local use. In Yemen, our Siraj pilot project is testing an innovative approach to combating digital harms in humanitarian crisis zones.
We are pioneering a public health approach to online risks, including gender-based violence. With a focus on women, girls and civil society organizations, [email protected] works with local partners to identify key risks and build digital resilience programs that respond. Our teams draw on a capacity-building toolbox that’s been strengthened through the experience of Foundation-supported projects around the world. But we support our beneficiaries with resources that are deeply tailored to their local challenges and languages.
[email protected]’s DIGITAL RESILIENCE TOOLBOX
- CyberSTAR: Our 6-point digital safety model: risks, identity, passwords, conversations, devices, data.
- Digital resilience training: Helping people and organizations recognize and reduce digital risks.
- Digital clinics: Broadly accessible digital safety learning, often tied to existing civil society events.
- Technical support: One-on-one digital safety help: women helping women, online and by phone.
- Emergency response: Technical and psychosocial support for people who’ve been targeted online.
- Awareness campaigns: Traditional and social media communications on reducing digital risks.
- Audit & remediation: Helping small organizations identify digital vulnerabilities and adopt safer practices.
- Alerts: Guidance on emerging threats, from system vulnerabilities to phishing scams and disinformation.
Building a culture of digital resilience
Since 2019, more than 35,000 women and girls have directly benefited from [email protected] services. That includes 17,000 who underwent training, 11,000 who attended awareness sessions and clinics, and 3,500 more who accessed our support lines. At the same time, we are helping to mainstream the dialogue on digital safety and gender-based violence, including through 400+ media appearances and 20 million engagements with our online campaigns.
We foster local digital champions to support long-term progress. For instance, our Digital Advocates team is the region’s first all-female group of digital safety trainers. This specially-trained cohort of women, drawn mostly from non-technical backgrounds, leads [email protected]’s on-the-ground education efforts. We’ve empowered a group of female journalists to share safety guidance with other media workers. Still other [email protected] cohorts of female influencers are driving digital safety awareness and advocacy in their own sectors and regions. And our local partner organizations are emerging as bona fide regional or even national digital safety leaders.
With a focus on women and girls, we are helping to build a culture of digital resilience across the MENA region. Because we believe everyone should be able to make the most of new digital technologies—to surmount old barriers and create new opportunities—without falling victim to new digital threats.
Project brochure (2021)
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