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Date posted: December 21, 2019
By MIFTAH

Ramallah 17/12/2019 As part of its project Gender Equality and Womens Empowerment, in partnership with and funding from UNFPA, MIFTAH targeted 54 women in the Jenin and Hebron districts located in safe spaces for battered women. MIFTAH conducted a study on the womens situation and their economic and social needs. The studys results and needs assessment concluded a need for intervention in order to empower and economically support the targeted women towards improving their socio-economic conditions and therefore helping them to escape the cycle of violence and dependency on others.

MIFTAH provided grants to the women, which were used for production, crafts and vocational projects. The projects began in the second half of this year and ended in December. The grants also included registering some of the women in centers and institutes to receive the necessary vocational and technical training in accordance with their needs. Many of the women showed interest in receiving education and training in professions such as photography and thermal printing.

One beneficiary from the Jenin district said she was confident her perfume project would be a success and that it would have a positive impact on her life, including significant economic repercussions for the family. She said she was able to pay tuition for three of her daughters at Al Najah University. At present, she runs the project with her husband, who helps in marketing her perfumes, which she says compete with similar products in the local market.

She said the project, which has been ongoing for the past 10 years, was only able to expand and develop because of MIFTAHs financial and advisory assistance. She went on to say that she hoped to expand the project so she would be able to rent her own place and also buy a car in order to transport her products and market them in nearby towns and villages.

Another beneficiary from the Hebron district received a MIFTAH grant that included equipment for her photography and videotaping project. This beneficiary explained how her project actually began as a hobby and that the private photo shoots she took were well received in her community, allowing her to expand.

She went on to say that at the beginning, she used her own camera. The MIFTAH grant then provided her with a professional camera and printer, which she said would help her to later expand her project even more. The project also supports her in continuing her education at the Polytechnic Institute.

She says today her future is full of hope, security and self-reliance, adding that she hopes she will soon have her own studio for wedding photography, with a special section for children and another section for wood engravings.

MIFTAHs grant, she said, has allowed her to advance leaps and bounds in her career. I can now help support my family. My youngest is eight-years old and my oldest is 20, she says.

Ghada Shadid, coordinator for the GBV-response project in emergency situations at the Medical Relief Services which provides safe spaces for battered women, and who supervised the training and follow-up with some of the MIFTAH grant beneficiaries, said the objective of the project was to create safe spaces for these women. Shadid explained that they worked with the women at three levels: social and legal awareness, consultations, and vocational training, adding that highly-skilled and experienced trainers were chosen to conduct the training. This project is extremely important for the women included in the grant, which was a culmination of their practical training and rehabilitation. It contributed to their psychological, social and economic empowerment and positively impacted them in terms of becoming pioneers and being able to depend on themselves.

MIFTAH project coordinator, Hanan Said said such interventions contributed to supporting women, especially those caught in a cycle of domestic violence and poverty, therefore helping to highlight their conditions and needs with the relevant institutions, in order to find possible ways of supporting them.

Arabic ...

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