Salute 2016 – To the #YearOfTheWomen: A New Year’s Message from our Founder/Executive Director of DotConnectAfrica Trust

We hope you are all off to a good start of the New Year!

Recall we themed 2015 as year of “creative disruption” as well as we promised you to stay in the ARENA, which was our theme in 2014 and together, we prevailed in all our undertakings to date and we are very proud.  As in DCA tradition, we have shared these accomplishments in our very popular December Newsletter, “Seasons Greetings: A Year-In-Review 2015”, posted and readily available on our website.

DCA also saw its victory over ICANN on our Epic battle over .africa ICANN in the .Africa Independent Review Process.

Therefore, 2016 comes with such hope and promise.  Before the World Economic Forum’s annual talk-shop from the  Alps in Davos, Switzerland produces its fantasy list of predictions for the year,  I will give mine.  I call for the year 2016 to be “Year of  The Women”

There are many reasons I came up with this theme, but mostly I feel  a sea-change is happening and my global engagement everywhere tells me the Universe is now on the side of women. This is in no way to reject our strongest supporters, men, but to simply acknowledge that women have become more independent, smart, accomplished, finding their new found roles and using it to push the limits of their opportunity confidently and with a great sense of responsibility, and care.  And let us not forget women are leading by example.

The Aha moment of my holiday gathering was a time I spent with my 6-year old niece, Betel, who made a remarkable comment which I cant help but share with everyone.  While flipping through Instagram pictures of the holidays festivities, she said to me, “When I grow up, I will not get married,” and when I asked why surprisingly, She said “Oh because I want to do my own thing”.  Then I asked “who said you can’t do that while married, your Mom, or girls at school?”, she then asserted herself nodding her head “No one, I can think!”.  You can then imagine my Aha moment .

Towards the end of 2015 in the month of November, I had the privilege of speaking and sharing experiences with a powerful panel of African women and an esteemed audience, regarding the status of women in Africa and way forward.  Here, I echoed the statistics which is now “the new normal”, indicating that women constitute the largest population and that positively translates into a workforce which is currently lacking in participation.  You can read my comments here.

There is a popular truth say “When you empower a woman you empower a community”.

Therefore, in christening 2016 the ‘Year of the Women’, I’m quite positive that this year will offer and create more avenues to promote the woman entrepreneur, the CEO, the President, the Head girl and the one who “wants to do her own thing” to  find more rewarding times within their daily lives and choices.

Here at DCA, we are doing our part. 

Our Miss.Africa initiative has launched a seed fund through our DCA academy programme, an initiative that is interested in learning about successful activities that are currently supporting women and girls in STEM, and through this effort, we identify how we might support their impact and scalability.

As customary, some of the scoop DCA is sharing with you and anticipates for 2016 is as follows:

DotConnectAfrica’s New Year wish for 2016:
A transformative and empowering society that will give more equal opportunities to women and the youth; An accountable  Global Internet Governance environment; 
What we predict:
Slow down of global economy including China and Africa and the BRICS, combined with the newly reported financial crisis; China shifts to consumer based economy;  India’s support to Africa noticed; Supply exceeds demand over crude oil; wages rise; more birth of women led enterprises; Digital Academies; development of the hyper-connected world; use of real data for smart cities; consumer IoT and the ‘smart home’; 3-D printing; New web based operating systems; financial tech or “FinTech”; new alliances to combat cyber security breaches; more self-driving car technologies.
    
 What will continue:
A US led global economy; The US will continue to oversight ICANN as we predicted in 2015; terrorism and conflict concerns increase globally; E-commerce proliferation; big data, artificial intelligence; Mobile app innovation; Wearables; nanotechnology; Smartphones evolution to be the primary tool; Robotics and Droid development; development of business applications for both virtual and augmented reality technology; cyber security breaches of major companies; media and personal spaces; Counterterrorism technologies; Drones and Euro Zone trouble.
What will be challenged:
Net Neutrality and zero rating; NTIA’s IANA transition: Entrepreneurship bottlenecks; Telco-OTT (Over-The-Top) Services; The internet walled gardens; corporate corruption

DCA has learned and led from the vantage point that when purpose is put in daily duty for the better good of the world tomorrow, transformation is inevitable.

Finally,  I wish to convey our sincere and deserving and sincere appreciation all our staff, supporters, partners and advisory Board members, particularly on our worthy journey over “.africa”.

In 2016 we continue to promote the equitable transformation of the women and youth initiatives, as a priority, as we continue to forge in the power of “Creative disruption”Our hope is that you will join and support us  to make that desirable difference in the world.

God Bless Africa & the World!

Wishing each and every one of you & your families a happy, peaceful and prosperous 2016.

Sincerely,
Sbekele
Sophia Bekele
Founder/CEO
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