Finland Minister for Foreign Trade and Development greets Syrian women and children in Azraq UN Women OasisMrs. Virolaninen, joined the women and girls within the Oasis center on a tour which highlighted the continuous support and commitment Finland provides to UN Women.
Finland Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, Anne-Mari Virolainen visited Azraq Refugee Camp on the 9th May, accompanied by UN Women Country Representative Ziad Sheikh. Mrs. Virolaninen joined the women and girls within UN Women Oasis center, the tour highlighted the continuous support and commitment Finland provides to UN Women.
Azraq Camp opened in 2014, hosting nearly 34,463 Syrians who have escaped the conflict in Syria. According to UNHCR’s data, 30% of households residing in the Azraq refugee camp are headed by women. UN Women inaugurated the first ‘Oasis for Women and Girls’ in the Azraq refugee camp in February 2018, the resilience and empowerment center is designed to provide secure livelihoods opportunities, protection and civic engagement services to vulnerable Syrian refugee women.
As the tour of the Oasis commenced, Mrs. Virolainen had the chance to greet women within each of the sectors available to the women and girls livelihood center including; the tailoring center, childcare, remedial education block and the beautician facilities. UN Women is providing 110 cash-for-work positions as well as other direct services that support resilience and empowerment to the women and girls within the Azraq Oasis.
The Oasis supports women to become economically independent, Azraq Oasis cash-for-work program supports women like 20 year old, Intesar Hassan to support her family and build an aspirational future. Intesar’s work as a beautician within the Oasis allows her to provide for her father and four disabled siblings.
“My mother died during the conflict in Syria, which made my family flee to Jordan. My father has became ill over the years, which has left me to provide for my household. This led me to the Oasis. It has been the best thing to happen to me in years, not only can I provide for my family but I am now thinking about my future. I have aspirations to work on my career as a beautician in the future and want to remind every Syrian women to never give up on their dreams.”- Intesar Hassan, Beautician, Azraq Oasis.
Through the support of International and national donors, partners and grass root organisations; UN Women continues to provide opportunities to women like Intesar, within Azraq, Za’atari and increasingly to vulnerable women beyond camp settings.
The visit of Mrs. Virolainen, provided UN Women the opportunity to thank Finland for their sustained collaboration through various initiatives and the Permanent Mission of Finland to the UN to provide sustainable livelihoods to vulnerable women in Jordan. After the tour of the Oasis Mrs. Virolainen received a mosaic of the Finish flag, made by the women within the handicraft sector of the Oasis.