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Bright home, brighter future: Wafaa's success story

As a divorced mother of two, 30-year-old Wafaa from the Telkief district of Nineveh Governorate in Iraq faced the daunting task of providing for her family on her own.

“Being the sole provider for a family is not an easy task”, she says. “Therefore, I made it my mission to search for job opportunities until I came across a Candles Making Training program offered by WRO”.

In partnership with Malteser International, the Women's Rehabilitation Organization (WRO) has undertaken a multitude of initiatives over the course of several years. These projects primarily focus on fostering social cohesion, access to health care, reconstruction, and financial stability.

The WRO workshops aim to empower women entrepreneurs in Iraq by providing them with training in handicraft skills and business management. Through the workshop, Wafaa learned how to create candles in various shapes and colors and gained essential business skills, which equipped her with the knowledge and confidence to start her own small business.

“I now have a small shop inside my house where I sell the candles that I make along with cosmetic items. I can now see my children happy and joyful. I’m able to provide them with their needs using the income I earned through my own work.”

Candles are symbolic to Wafaa as their light represents hope in times of darkness. Now, her candle business is illuminating more than just her home – being self-sufficient has brightened up her life and future prospects as well. Wafaa expanded her shop online and is always seeking new ways to grow and develop her business.

NGOs like the WRO play a crucial role in empowering women entrepreneurs in Iraq by providing them with the training and resources they need to succeed. The More Durable Assistance and Development (IMDAD) project was implemented by the Women's Rehabilitation Organization in partnership with Malteser International, funded by the German Cooperation. Since 2018, we have been working to rebuild the region and create prospects for the returning population.

Like Wafaa, more and more women in the region are benefitting from the programme and moving towards empowerment and self-sustainability.  

(May 3, 2023)

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