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Amid the coronavirus pandemic and the social distancing measures, UN Women is providing urgent support, information and essential services to more than 5,700 Syrian refugees in Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps.
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Falha Abrabo arrived at the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan after fleeing Syria in 2012. Shortly thereafter, her husband had a severe stroke, which left her in the position of becoming the sole provider for her family. She found a livelihood opportunity teaching adult literacy sessions to other women through the incentive-based volunteer programme at UN Women’s Oasis Centre, which builds women’s resilience and empowerment.
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Deep within the rural community of Karak lies the town of Taibeh, where 39-year-old Mona Ahmed Alqkla, found a safe place for her family seven years ago after fleeing the conflict in Dara'a, Syria. She had never found an opportunity to work, until now. She recently joined the incentive-based volunteer programme as a tailor in the Oasis Centre in Taibeh, which was launched by the Ministry of Social Development in partnership with UN Women in March 2019.
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At 50, Fatima Alhaj has finally found the confidence to overcome the pain of her past. A Syrian refugee living in the Azraq refugee camp in Jordan since 2016, she regained her sense of purpose after joining UN Women’s Incentive-based Volunteer programme as a literacy teacher, where teaching and writing are her catharsis.
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1.3 million refugees are currently hosted by Jordan, a country that continues to demonstrate humanitarian leadership in the Syrian refugee crisis. In 2012, UN Women opened its first Oasis— a centre for refugee women and girls to access emergency aid and specialized gender-based violence services at Za’atari refugee camp in northern Jordan. Over time, the scope and impact of the Oasis model has expanded to encompass multi-sectoral services that build women’s resilience and empowerment. Currently, UN Women operates four Oasis centres in two Jordanian camps: Za’atari and Azraq.
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Maha Aasi Emm Ala’a, a Syrian refugee, came to the UN Women-run women’s centre in Jordan’s Za’atari refugee camp with severe depression after her husband passed away. She received counseling and found tailoring work through the cash-for-work programme. As refugee crises become more protracted, humanitarian assistance must take into account immediate and long-term needs of women and girls. The women’s centres in Za’atari Refugee Camp are building women’s resilience and empowering them as leaders, workers and entrepreneurs.
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At 47, Emm Ali has experienced immense loss. A Syrian refugee living in the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan since 2013, she found a sense of purpose as she joined UN Women’s cash-for-work programme and started weaving carpets. The cash-for-work programme is the largest employer of women refugees in the camp.
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United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres visited the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan on Tuesday morning, 28 March 2017. Coming ahead of his participation at the Arab Summit (Dead Sea, 23-29 March 2017), this is the first official visit of Mr. Guterres to Jordan and the region in his capacity as UN Secretary-General.
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More than 5,000 Syrian women and girls visit ‘Oases’ safe spaces in the Za’atari camp per month, and several hundred have independently earned incomes through UN Women’s work programme in Jordan.