Asala launches project for women empowerment


The Palestinian Businesswomen’s Association “Asalal” and its partners in Tunisia, Spain and Italy, launched on Tuesday via Zoom, a European Union-funded project on "Social Innovation in the Agri-food sector Women’s Empowerment in the Mediterranean Sea basin", which aims to promote women's participation in the labor market and motivate them to the entrepreneurship. By leveraging the potential of the agri-food sector for innovation and growth in the Mediterranean.

This came during the opening electronic meeting which was attended by representatives of the ENI CBCMED “Cooperation across borders in the Mediterranean” program and the project implementation partners, representatives of the agri-food sector, representatives of professional and trade union structures in the agri-food sector, businesswomen and young women and journalists from the Mediterranean partner countries.

The meeting focused on the disruption in the agri-food sector, the expected scenarios after the crisis of COVID-19 virus in the Mediterranean region, and its reflections on the empowerment and employment of women in the region. The speakers emphasized the necessity of implementing several alternatives and mechanisms to reduce these reflections on women. They stressed the necessity of adapting to the effects of the Corona pandemic crisis.

On her part, Merna Ziadeh, the Program Manager in the Palestinian Businesswomen’s Association “Asala” said that the project aims at creating job opportunities for women, by providing them with group of trainings that will work on qualifying women and helping them to enter the labor markets. The project would strengthen Asala’s message which aimed at empowering Palestinian women with limited resources to access their economic and social rights.

On her part, Raja Rantesi, the Chairperson of Asala, expressed her happiness that the association would be part of this project that will serve the agri-food sector and the women who work in it, and emphasized its importance to contribute to the economic empowerment of women and the creation of job opportunities for them. The project will work on facing the difficulties and obstacles which limit women's access to the skills needed to produce and market their products.

The meeting was attended by the General Manager for the Economic & Social Development Centre of Palestine (ESDC) Akram Al-Taher, who spoke about the effects and repercussions of the Corona pandemic crisis on the agri-food sector in Palestine. He stressed that the sector faced and still faces many challenges related to the inability to get the necessary raw materials for the production process, in addition to the inability to deliver products to the markets because of the difficulty of movement during the emergency period, which led to the closure of external and internal crossings between Palestinian cities.

The European Union-funded "Social Innovation in the Agri-food sector Women’s Empowerment in the Mediterranean Sea basin" project is a 3-years project and implemented in four Mediterranean countries under the ENI CBCMED “Cooperation across borders in the Mediterranean” program