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QRCS project aims for economic empowerment of women in Iraq

QRCS project aims for economic 
empowerment of women in Iraq

Tribune News Network
The representative office of the Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) in Iraq is carrying out a project to support livelihoods of needy families in Iraqi Kurdistan. With a total budget of $202,579, the 15-month project focuses on displaced Iraqis in and outside the camps, as well as poor families from the host community.
The project is aimed at empowering internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the camps, those out of camps, and the most vulnerable returnees, helping them to secure their basic needs such as health care, food, education, and other services.
Also, it seeks to enhance livelihoods by supporting agricultural activities, livestock breeding, and vocational training, thus creating a source of income for the beneficiaries and reducing dependence on humanitarian aid and passive mechanisms of adaptation.
To that end, the project involves enabling 31 non-camp poor women supporting their families to generate stable income and ensure safe and decent living conditions for their families. Another component of the project is training for female breadwinners in 20 displaced families at the Bahirka camp in Erbil, to provide them with practical sewing skills. This will allow them access to basic services such as education, food, and health care.
According to the project’s action plan, the planned activities include conducting a field assessment of poor displaced families at camps in Erbil (Khabat district) and Dohuk (Khanke and Sharya towns) and identifying beneficiaries based on eligibility.
It also includes making a field assessment of poor and displaced families headed by women at the Bahirka camp (Erbil); selecting beneficiaries of vocational training; evaluating the camp’s vocational training centre and identifying the needs and rehabilitation requirements.
The planned activities also include supplying equipment for sewing training courses; procuring training materials and supplies; holding vocational training courses for poor women at camps, and distributing livestock and fodder to non-camp beneficiaries and the host community affected by years of conflict in Iraq.
So far, heads of sheep have been distributed to 20 non-camp displaced women in Khanke and Sharya (Dohuk) and 10 poor local women in Khabat, as follows. Eight of them received one dairy cow and 600 kg of fodder each, and 23 women received three heads of sheep, four hens, one rooster, and 225 kg of fodder each.
As regards vocational training, the vocational training centre at the Bahirka camp was fully rehabilitated and equipped to train poor women to work as tailors. It was provided with sewing machines and materials to accommodate 10 trainees per course.
The first sewing course has already been held, and the first batch of 10 trainees graduated. The course involved theoretical lectures and practical exercises, under the supervision of qualified specialist trainers from the Department of Labour and Social Affairs in Erbil.
Lasting for 35 working days, each course educates women on advanced design, sewing, and embroidery skills. At the end of the course, the trainees are granted certificates recognized by the Department of Labor and Social Affairs. They also receive an in-kind donation consisting of a sewing machine, fabrics, and sewing tools to start their own business.