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Exhibition gives self-employed women wider exposure

By Sawsan Tabazah - May 04,2016 - Last updated at May 04,2016

 

AMMAN — A fair currently under way at Ras Al Ain Gallery is enabling self-employed women to gain new clientele and make ends meet.

The seventh Self-employed Women's Products Exhibition, which concludes on Thursday, has also enabled charities to gain more exposure.

One of these charities is the Italian Arsenale Dell’incontro (Bait Al Leqa), which serves children and young adults with mental disabilities in Madaba.

“Our participation in the fair came to introduce people to the charity and raise funds,” Ola Shehadeh, a member of the society, told The Jordan Times at the fair, co-organised by the Labour Ministry and the Greater Amman Municipality.

The charity is selling handicrafts produced by its students. 

Even for individual participants, the exhibition is a good opportunity. 

“The exhibition has helped me market my products and improve my financial situation,” said Randa, who was selling handmade accessories.  

The fair is aimed at marketing products by women who received training through the Labour Ministry's self-employment project and encouraging women to work from home, according to a ministry statement.

The head of the women labour directorate at the Labour Ministry, Laila Shobaki, said the fair is part of the ministry's self-employment project, which started in 2012.

Under the project, 500 women have received training within charity organisations in underprivileged areas on making products from their natural environments, such as dairy products, garments and agricultural products, Shobaki said.

She told The Jordan Times that the success of the previous fairs’ marketing and promotional goals pushed the ministry to expand the participation to include women who did not take part in the project and 25 charity organisations affiliated with the entities like the Social Development Ministry and the Jordanian Hashemite Fund for Human Development.

Each edition of the show showcases products by about 100 to 150 women.  

“I estimate that the consecutive exhibitions have benefited over 2,000 women,” Shobaki said. 

The fair this year hosted Al Samaha for Finance and Investment Co., which offers easy loans conforming with Sharia (Islamic law).

 

Shobaki added that the ministry is considering signing a memorandum of cooperation with the company, noting that four women participating at the fair were granted loans.

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