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1st virtual meeting October 12, 2009 Jolande Leinenbach, ed-consult, DK - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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MW-SONET Mentoring Rural Women through Social Networking. 1st virtual meeting October 12, 2009 Jolande Leinenbach, ed-consult, DK Merete Pedersen, ed-consult, DK. About ed-consult. educational consultancy (since 2001) Activities: education& training, R&D projects, evaluation, consultancy

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Mentoring Rural Women through Social Networking

1st virtual meeting

October 12, 2009

Jolande Leinenbach, ed-consult, DK

Merete Pedersen, ed-consult, DK

About ed-consult

educational consultancy (since 2001)

Activities: education& training, R&D projects, evaluation, consultancy

Focus on

eCompetency development for SMEs and people in rural and remote areas

= skills to use ICT tools critically, creatively, effectively for

collaboration, knowledge sharing, learning, and business

Communication skills

Empowerment courses

Creativity courses

What we do

We help creatures to communicate!

BB in Denmark

  • Mobility meeting in Denmark Jan. 2005

  • (Asdis & Ragnhildur)

  • Visit to key farm women in Denmark

  • Clustering meeting on innovation in Germany

The Icelandic Building Bridges concept matured into a successful Leonardo proposal to start in October 2005.

BB in Denmark

The beginnings:

Reluctance with users, stakeholders, etc.

No need for emancipation of women

  • But after regional ”reforms” in January 2007:

  • Women become less visible and powerful than ever

  • Schools are closed

  • More difficult to access lifelong learning for people in the countryside

  • Rural policies and strategies become more male-dominated

Building Bridges now

  • Successful dissemination and demonstration phase

  • Just one short article in a regional newspaper:

  • Extreme demand for Building Bridges courses

  • There is a great need for Building Bridges

  • The concept is right

  • The grassroots approach pays off

The issues the same in Europe

Women in agriculture feel isolated.

They don’t have equal opportunities to men in the sector.

Their social status and status as business people is low.

Chances of finding new opportunities are often difficult in rural areas.


  • Women represent about half the people working on the farms - often double and triple tasking, but they are just not represented in decision making processes.

  • Social and intellectual capital unused.

  • Diversity needed to shape innovation.

  • Many women want to be more visible.

EmpowermentApproaches in BB

Using lifelong learning as an empowerment tool

to initiate change, innovation, critical thinking processes

Identify Key Women involved in rural and agricultural issues

= women who are visible, andwant more

Involve them as mentors, faciliators, teachers, ...

Use of ICT tools for learning, communication, collaboration,

and networking in connection with local empowerment workshops.

Distance educationeLearning

Idea Cafés

Local workshop where women learn how to learn and

where creative and critical thinking are started using brainstorming, mindmaps, SWOT analyses, critical reflections, ....






What is innovation?

A risk

(No finance)



















What has been achieved so far in BB

An open BB campus for lifelong learning

(based on Moodle - Open Source eLearning platfrom)

An exciting course programme

  • Introduction to eLearning

  • Farm shop marketing

  • Communication skills

  • Time management/planning

  • Herding Sheep and other short practical courses

  • AgroTourism

  • Digital Backpack: How to use ICT critically, creatively,

  • and effectively

  • Agricultural Issues: Short practical courses on current agricultural

  • More courses are emerging!



100 ambitious and creative women online!

learning, sharing knowledge and best practice, collaborating, supporting each other

Many more women in empowerment workshops, not yet ready or without infrastructure to work online

Example: The Digital Backpack

Creative and communicative ICT skills


DIGITAL BACKPACK aims at empowering the learners to use the tools of the information society, i.e. computers, software, digital equipment, critically, creatively and efficiently to reach their own goals. Instead of simply learning one application program after another, they get a backpack with digital equipment, a camera, a zip stick, get an introduction how to handle this.

Then they set themselves goals. After this they do field work with their cameras, i.e. capture pictures of nature, culture, work, art, people. They return to the learning house or their own computers, learn how to handle some creative and social software and develop their own stories.

Didactical approaches/teaching methods:

A blended e-learning approach will be used, starting with a 4-hour onsite workshop, where the learners get hands-on experiences to handle a camera and get basic knowledge on capturing scenes.

This session is followed by a 4 week online workshop, actively moderated by two tutors. Learners are encouraged to use their whole environment as a learning environment to catch scenes and images. They share the images in the online classroom. They learn to find information with special tips on photography and story-telling on the net, and share the information.

After 4-weeks there is a further 4-hour onsite session, where learners learn to process photos and tell stories with the photos, and publish photos.

This session is followed by a 4-week project work session, where the learners elaborate their digital stories.

The learners can learn witht their own computers or come to the Learning House, which will be established at 2 sites at least.

Further products:

Handbook for the Mentors (Key Women)

explaining the mentoring and pedagogical approach and

providing tools and best practice examples

(empowerment scenarios) for the key women

Open Forum

As a networking tool for the women


  • Building Bridges is a successful and sustainable model to

  • make lifelong learning accessiblein rural areas

  • and to

  • empower women to become visible and successful!

  • privately, to develop personally

  • professionally

  • culturally

  • politically


Great European added value!

Women start communicating across borders

Launch of two mobility actions (CZ-IS, IS-DK)

Contribution to

European Active Citizenship!

Thank you!


[email protected]