Date: Wednesday, July 10, 2019

H.E. Ambassador Hidenao Yanagi, Ambassador of Japan to Jordan; Mr. Ziad Sheikh and Colonel Ismaeel Al.Khrisat, Syrian Refugee Affairs Directorate, present certificates to 50 Syrian refugee women who have successfully completed skills training and capacity building under UN Women’s Incentive-Based Volunteerism (IBV) scheme. Photo: UN Women/ Lauren Rooney

Azraq Refugee Camp, Jordan. Held at the presence of H.E Mr. Hidenao Yanagi, Ambassador of Japan to Jordan, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) organized a graduation ceremony in the Azraq refugee camp, to acknowledge the achievements of 50 Syrian refugee women who successfully completed skill trainings and capacity building under UN Women’s Incentive-Based Volunteerism (IBV) scheme. Generously funded by the Government of Japan, this initiative provided vulnerable women with relevant job skills, while meeting their protection concerns and promoting empowerment through leadership and civic engagement.

"The government of Japan acknowledges the fact that many households are headed by women at the refugee camps and with regards to this it is important for women in displacement to generate income through sustainable and decent work which will enable them to secure their livelihood and maintain their households. We hope that our support to this project has directly contributed to building resilience and empowerment for Syrian women in the camp setting," affirmed H.E. Ambassador Hidenao Yanagi, Ambassador of Japan to Jordan.

Following opening remarks by Mr. Ziad Sheikh, UN Women Jordan Representative, Colonel Ismaeel Al.Khrisat on behalf of the Syrian Refugee Affairs Directorate, and H.E. Ambassador Yanagi, the graduation ceremony continued with a poetry performance by a Syrian refugee woman, who shared her hopes and aspiration for the future. Graduates from the IBV programme are among the most vulnerable women residing in the camp, including female-headed households as well as elderly women who may face additional challenges in accessing livelihood opportunities in the camp.

“UN Women is working to support women with on-the-job training, so they can join the labour force and remain economically active. We do this by providing transport and childcare options for the women, alongside the training opportunities. And we engage men and boys so that working women have the support of their families," said Mr. Ziad Sheikh, UN Women Jordan Representative.

After the ceremony, H.E. Ambassador Yanagi had the chance to interact with Syrian refugees enrolled in UN Women’s IBV programme, to learn about the comprehensive services provided in the Center to facilitate their work, such as child-care facilities and education services. He also gained a firsthand overview of UN Women’s efforts to leverage innovation and technology to empower Syrian refugee women.

Through the regional programme ‘Women's Leadership, Empowerment, Access and Protection (LEAP) – Egypt, Jordan, Iraq’, the Government of Japan has been generously supporting UN Women’s efforts to create sustainable employment opportunities for women in displacement, and to provide them with skills for employability. Within this framework, UN Women currently operates four ‘Oasis Centers for Women and Girls’ in the Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps, building women’s resilience and empowerment through the provision of IBV and livelihoods training, services for those at risk of and surviving gender-based violence, and civic engagement and education opportunities. UN Women reached more than 20,000 direct and indirect Syrian refugee beneficiaries in 2018, with 4,182 women and men refugees benefiting directly from IBV opportunities provided during the year.

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