Businesswomen encouraged to seize ICT opportunities at Women in Business Expo

Minister of Public Telecommunication, Catherine Hughes, has encouraged women in business to get more involved in information communication technology (ICT).

The minister was delivering the feature address at the opening of the third annual Women in Business Expo which is being held at the Pegasus Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown.

Minister Hughes pointed out that in the next 20 years, 70 percent of jobs will be ICT related and encouraged women to take advantage of ICT opportunities. “Today you can sit in the comfort of your home and you can advertise your product to an entire world,” she noted.

The Women in Business Expo is being hosted by the Sonia Noel Foundation for Creative Arts and Women’s Association for Sustainable Development in observation of International Women’s Day 2018. International Women’s Day was observed on Thursday, March 8.

Minister Hughes encouraged the women to be agents of change and activists in their communities. “We need more women in the political parties, in Parliament and in government. We come to the table with a totally different perspective. Let your voices be heard,” she charged.

Ministerial Advisor at the Ministry of Social Protection Alicia Reece
Ministerial Advisor at the Ministry of Social Protection Alicia Reece

Meanwhile, Ministerial Advisor at the Ministry of Social Protection (MSP), Alicia Reece, said it is imperative to empower women and girls in rural and hinterland locations.

Reece added the time is now that women advocate for progress “to ensure that any woman with the next big idea finds the support she needs to realise her dreams and secure the future of her business.”

The government has invested significantly in advancing education, training and provision of incentive and support systems to facilitate the entrance of women into the workforce and self-employment, Reece noted.

These programmes include the Youth Entrepreneurial Skills Training Programme (YEST), the Sustainable Livelihood and Entrepreneurial Development (SLED) initiative, the Hinterland Employment and Youth Service (HEYS) initiative and the Youth Innovation Project of Guyana (YIPoG) among others.

“All of these programmes are designed to ensure that women attain the relevant skill set that is required for the job market either to become employable or self-employed,” Reece said.

Founder of the Women in Business Expo, Sonia Noel
Founder of the Women in Business Expo, Sonia Noel

According to founder of the Expo, Sonia Noel the expo represents her belief in women to “let them know it is possible”. She encouraged the business women to be conscious of their social human responsibility.

“Businesses are supposed to be about profit but the profit has to have a purpose. So, it has to be purpose-driven businesses that is what we’re encouraging with these women,” Noel said.

Some 60 businesswomen are participating in the expo which runs until Sunday, March 11.

Source: Tiffny Rhodius – DPI

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