Celebrating Women and Girls in Science, A Journey of Empowerment

Feb 12, 2024

The International Day of Women and Girls in Science holds a significant place in the hearts
of the admirers around the world. This annual observance, celebrated on 11 th February, not
only celebrates women and girls outstanding contributions to science, but also acts as an
encouraging reminder of the significance of gender equality in STEM.
As we honour this day, it is critical to reflect on its history and significance. The roots of this
international day can be traced back to the United Nations General Assembly’s decision on
22nd December 2015, which declared 11th February as worldwide Day of Women and Girls in
Science. The aim was to encourage women and girls to have full and equal access to and
engagement in science, while also recognising their achievements in STEM fields. Since
then, this day has become a symbol of empowerment for women and girls all over the
world, inspiring them to pursue their interests in science, technology, engineering, and

At Afghanistan and Central Asian Association (ACAA), we wholeheartedly support the spirit
of this day by promoting initiatives that encourage women and girls in science and
technology. Our Empowering Girls in Digital Innovation Project demonstrates our
commitment towards decreasing the gendered digital gap for Afghan refugees living in the

Launched in 2023 at City Hall in London in reaction to the Taliban’s recent restriction on girls
education in Afghanistan, this project intends to give digital literacy to three categories of
girls: newly arriving Afghan girls, settled refugees, and UK-born descendants of displaced
refugees. We acknowledge that these girls face specific challenges, such as
intergenerational trauma and digital poverty, which limits their access to education and
opportunities. We teach our participants crucial digital skills through weekly classes and
workshops that address issues including digital rights, security, usage, and emotional
intelligence. Furthermore, our Creative Education portion aims to improve young girls’
mental health by encouraging creativity and self-expression. Coding Classes, which take
place as part of a six-week coding training programme, are a highlight of our initiative. Our
young refugee girls learn coding and artificial intelligence, which helps them to develop
mobile apps, games, and interactive art with JavaScript. This initiative not just improves
their technical skills, but also allows the students to be agents of change in their society.

As we honour International Day of Women and Girls in Science, let us acknowledge projects
that go beyond mere symbolism. They represent practical steps towards a world in which
every girl, regardless of background, has the opportunity to contribute to the development
of science and technology. Together, we can inspire the next generation of female scientists
and engineers, paving the path for a more promising and innovative future.

Researched and written by Mouli Sharma

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