IFWEA Global Knowledge Community News

Apr 06

Using Instant Messaging to empower women negotiators

IFWEA affiliate StreetNet facilitated a course for women negotiators members of their affiliate organization SLeTU, based in Sierra Leone. The goal of these courses, which have been run for several years, is to strengthen the capacity of members and affiliates to interact with authorities and institutions.

However, this was the first course aimed at women negotiators from Sierra Leone exclusively. And notably, it was delivered on WhatsApp, the instant messaging app, making it more accessible for women street vendors, who do not always have access to laptops and stable internet connection.

At first, the course was planned to be delivered via  Zoom. However, connection problems meant that participants could not properly join through that platform. StreetNet had already conducted mentoring sessions with SLeTU through WhatsApp, therefore it was decided to adapt the negotiations skills course to this methodology. Although WhatsApp does not allow for video conferences with many participants, WhatsApp messaging is extremely accessible for a variety of reasons.

Find out how the course was run, and how participants responded, here.

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