Let Girls Map is a YouthMappers campaign active annually from International Women’s Day, March 8 to International Day of the Girl, October 11 to feature mapping efforts that support women and girls issues and to build inclusive mapping communities for female student mappers around the world. Map features and attributes important for local and global projects on OpenStreetMap, and use the hashtags #YouthMappers and #LetGirlsMap to show your support! To date, we have mapped 100,000 buildings for health and education projects!

Girls’ education and women’s health empowers a nation's development. Recent research verifies that there is a strong linkage between women's education and international development. There is also an important relationship between women’s access to health services and economic productivity.

How can mapping help?

Adding openly available spatial data about where schools and clinics are located improves knowledge and access to quality education and health services. Adding specific attributes about these important features helps education and health providers, as well as the governmental and civil society actors that promote them. Help us by putting schools and clinics on the map using the people’s map : OpenStreetMap.

YouthMappers conduct a special campaign every year to enlist your help over several months to pay special attention to issues affecting women and girls around the world, and to the amazing female mappers who are making a difference in their world by mapping it! Let Girls Map! 


WHAT CAN you do?

Let Girls Map aims to motivate and encourage female mappers to participate in mapping, to promote that everyone can create and sustain gender-inclusive mapping communities, and to pay attention to how the act of mapping can especially support the needs of women and girls around the world.​ Here are 5 things YOU can do to help!

1. Map locally

Put your own schools and clinics near you on OpenStreetMap! Add as many features (buildings and roads) as you can. Since they are local resources, discover important data attributes (like addresses and street names) and add them to the map. Here is a guide that can help. Use #LetGirlsMap in the changeset comments!  In the coming months, YouthMappers will be dedicating resources from our local capacity building efforts to help selected chapters focus especially on engaging more female mappers, mapping features of interest to the needs of girls and women, and supporting open spatial data needs for use by local providers of health and education where USAID Missions work.

Be sure to use the hashtags #LetGirlsMap and #YouthMappers


2. Map remotely

Organize a mapathon or map on your own for the DREAMS project. This PEPFAR program aims to reduce HIV infection among adolescent girls and young women in HIV priority areas in sub-Saharan Africa, where girls and young women account for over 70 percent of new HIV infections. Social isolation, economic disadvantage, discriminatory cultural norms, orphanhood, gender-based violence, and school drop-out all contribute to girls’ vulnerability to HIV.





Tanzania is one country with a high incidence of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), early marriage, and Gender Based Violence. NGOs on the ground need better road and residential area data to facilitate their outreach work. Tanzania Development Trust is organizing tasks to map and offering the opportunity to crowd-analyze the data created. The maps produced will be used to help activists to better protect girls at risk, to empower local mappers to map and develop their communities, and to enable villages to develop village land use plans to mitigate land disputes and better develop their resources.

Beginning YouthMappers may help remotely create data by mapping these tasks:

Crowd2Map Tanzania are also looking for advanced mappers to assist with the following:

  • To validate their tasks

  • To join a team of advanced mappers giving feedback and advice to new mappers via their slack channel

  • To partner with a community mapping group in Tanzania, receive their annotated field papers via email and input the information into OSM, following this workflow.

  • To partner with a community mapping group in Tanzania and produce a printable village map using QGIS. For an assignment, please email Janet Chapman.

4. Support inclusion in your mapping community

Learn tips on how to make sure your own chapter or mapping community is operating according to the YouthMappers ethics statement, is harassment free and inclusive of women and girls. You should also celebrate the achievements of women student mappers. YouthMappers has recognized a group of chapters in 2017, chapters in 2018 and chapters in 2019 for their efforts for inclusive female participation.

5. Listen and get inspired 

Read some of these blogs by YouthMappers (click on their photos below). We are proud that of our 5,000 mappers around the world, about 40% are female students, and fully 25% of our chapters have female membership of 50% or more, despite that reports of low rates of gender equal participation in OSM, even as low as 5%.  Help amplify the voices of women and girls in your YouthMappers chapter or university or OSM community to participate and be fully engaged and included, or better yet, write your own blog!

© 2016 by YouthMappers. Proudly created with Wix.com. Supported by USAID Award #AID-OAA-G-15-00007 and Cooperative Agreement Number: 7200AA18CA00015.

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