Press Release

Microsoft launches initiative to support Iraqi women in technology, economic development

Microsoft launches initiative to support Iraqi women in technology, economic development
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Tuesday, June 13th 2006

Microsoft Corp is working to support the economic empowerment of women in Iraq through its initiative to support women in technology.

On June 11 at the Global Summit of Women, Microsoft Corp, in conjunction with the Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI), launched an initiative to support women in technology (WIT) in the Arab region. The Institute of International Education West Coast Center will manage and implement the project in collaboration with local partners.

The WIT program aims to afford women in Iraq the opportunity to enhance their marketable skills and gain economic independence.

The program will help build community centers that will work to provide women with both IT skills and general business skills and create a network of female organizations in Iraq.

One of the main goals of the Middle East Partnership Initiative is to support education and empowerment for women throughout the Arab-speaking world, according to the Microsoft announcement.

Microsoft is an annual participant at the Global Summit of Women, which for 15 years has worked to provide the means for the international exchange of best practices by leading female leaders towards advancing women's economic status worldwide. This year, Microsoft sent a multinational delegation to the summit.

"Microsoft is pleased to once again be a sponsor of the Global Summit of Women and participate in this invaluable platform that seeks to progress the leadership capacity of women across the globe," said Gerri Elliott, corporate vice president, Worldwide Public Sector of Microsoft. "Each year the exchange of ideas and best practices among participants manifests itself in tangible projects that address specific women's needs. Our joint initiative to support women in technology truly reflects the spirit and intent of the summit by working to empower women in the Arab region."

Microsoft will also be present at the pre-summit Ministerial Roundtable, which convenes women ministers of varied portfolios to discuss policies that have positively affected women's economic status in their own countries.

The company also will feature the MSN Cyber Cafe at the WEXPO center for the duration of the event, highlighting programs in support of women's causes, employability, digital inclusion and internet safety for children.


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