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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Her Majesty visits Al Karma Center in Jabal Al Natheef

Queen Rania: “Women’s voices have to be heard”

Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah visited Al Karma Center in Jabal Al Natheef in Amman today to check on the Jordan River Foundation (JRF) community empowerment programs in the center. The center includes an assembly kitchen and a handicrafts workshop. Her Majesty also met with women beneficiaries from the Bani Hamida and Al Rayyan projects.

Her Majesty stressed the importance of women’s civic engagement and said: “A woman’s voice is very important and has to be heard, whether through electoral participation or in parliament itself”. She also expressed Her pride in the work that the women are producing and their role in changing society’s view of women.

Her Majesty commended the attendees on their work, adding that they are “role models” for other women, especially in their ability to generate income and help their families, and proving to others a woman’s ability to bring about positive change.

The women shared with the Queen the impact that their participation in the Karma Center JRF programs has had on their lives, their income and their own views of their contribution to society.

The Queen toured the center’s facilities, starting with the assembly line kitchen, where ten women were taking a cooking course. The kitchen had been renovated and expanded in 2010 by the International Relief and Development Organization who partnered with JRF to train women on cooking and marketing. Chefs from Amman’s most renowned hotels regularly give the women additional training.

Her Majesty also visited the handicrafts workshop where women cut materials, assemble, process, draw, outline, and label items that would be sold at the JRF showroom.

Started in 1988, The Jordan River Designs Project now operates under the umbrella of Al-Karma Center. The project employs 24 people at the Center, and two others at the Wadi Rayyan project. Both projects contract 255 women as direct beneficiaries to embroider traditional and contemporary home furnishings, gift items and fashion accessories. These women benefit another 849 women as indirect beneficiaries. 

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