This regional gender programme “Assistance to and Empowerment of Syrian Refugee Women and girls and vulnerable women and girls of Host Communities in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon”, funded by the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) for a total amount of six million Euro, aims at protecting and empowering the Syrian refugee women and girls and those of vulnerable host communities in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon.
This Programme specifically focuses on sexual and reproductive health and rights and socio-economic empowerment. Its operational structure includes two multi-bilateral components, implemented respectively by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (UN-ESCWA), and a bilateral component implemented by two Italian civil society organisation active in the three countries, namely Oxfam and ARCS, in partnership with local organizations.
Here after is a human stories of one of the women who is benefiting from the activities carried out in the safe space places, part of UNFPA component.
A new beginning
No one becomes great except through many experiences and mistakes. The story of this woman, a true story in all its details, proves this saying. A woman married at the age of 30, 17 years ago, and got pregnant right after marriage. However, she had an abortion not long after learning the news. Soon after, she got divorced and started facing the community with no confidence in herself and others.
She remained at home with a minimum level of communication with everyone, until her family, mother and brother, decided to go to Egypt, fleeing the war in Syria. Without children, husband or friends, she suffered from depression, sadness, and loneliness until she was introduced to the CARE Egypt Women Friendly Space in Nasr City.
She visits the space on a frequent basis and registers in many of the courses offered, specifically the satin embroidery course. Enthusiastically, she produced many tablecloths to decorate her room. She also participated in the Crochet courses and did many beautiful pieces. These works relieved her grief and provided her with the opportunity to make friends.
The love she has to the space was an incentive to re-register in new activities, including the psychotherapy sessions that helped her overcome her psychological issues. She also joined the theater workshop that added quite positive characteristics to her personality as increasing self-confidence, self-esteem, and public speaking. Furthermore, she attended awareness sessions on early marriage and positive parenting that added new information that she could pass on to her friends and family. The space has allowed her to overcome her psychological and social issues because of her frequent visit and register in course.