15-year-old Jenifer Chikosa, a form 2 student from Emvuyeni CDSS in Mzimba, has developed a Disease and Prevention (DAP) Application, a search engine for diseases and how they can be treated.

Jenifer observed a number of Malawians walk long distances to seek assistance on ailments which they can easily get help by just surfing the internet.

This came to light during the commemoration of the Girls in ICT Day in Lilongwe on Wednesday.

She urged girls to consider pursuing ICT as a career to help Malawi develop.

“Too many people in our country are living far away from hospitals. We have developed this App because people do not know what diseases they suffer from and how they can be prevented. People where I stay are not even aware of kwashiorkor even the signs of malaria.

“So, with this App, they can just look it up there and find the causes, symptoms, effects and prevention and then get treated,” said Jenifer.

ICT for Development Manager at Plan Malawi, Eldridge Mwangonde, highlighted the need to make technology more accessible to girls to close the digital gender gap.

“We are training girls in different areas throughout Malawi especially in districts of Mulanje, Kasungu, Lilongwe and Mzimba. We support girls to develop things like the Applications even using mobile phones,” said Mwangonde.

On her part, Principal Secretary for information and communications technology, Dr. Esmie Kainja, said government has put in place measures to ensure ICT is recognized, embraced and taken as an enabler.

The global Girls in ICT commemoration is held on 25th April and in Malawi it was held on Wednesday under the theme Girls as creators of technology and online content.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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