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Our impact - Iraq

Photo: Alison Baskerville

Our Impact in Iraq

Since 2015, through working with local partners, we have helped to train over 17,000 women in income generation, business skills and women’s rights as well as providing free access to vital trauma counselling.

We have gained critical knowledge about their context and needs and have now opened a Women for Women International office in Iraq and started enrolling women in our one-year programme.

TODAY, THERE ARE OVER 3 MILLION INTERNALLY DISPLACED PEOPLE ACROSS IRAQ, AS WELL AS MORE THAN 200,000 SYRIAN REFUGEES. THE VAST MAJORITY ARE HOSTED IN THE KURDISTAN REGION OF IRAQ (KRI) – WHERE 1 IN 4 PEOPLE IS A REFUGEE OR INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSON.

We are working to empower the most marginalised and vulnerable women in Iraq. These include women uprooted from their homes by conflict, as well as local women from Kurdish host communities – which are some of the poorest in Iraq.

Across communities and religions, the testimonies of the women we serve reveal daunting realities. Many are in financial crisis – rising costs have exhausted their limited savings and assets, and women lack marketable skills and resources to earn an income. Many bear the psychological scars of horrific violence and rights abuses, including rape and torture, in addition to the traumatic loss of homes and loved ones.

Our programme will provide women with vital skills, knowledge and resources to create sustainable change in the four key areas of health and well-being, livelihoods and saving, rights and decision-making, and support networks.

Hairdressing class/demonstration at Warvin
Hairdressing class/demonstration at Warvin's training centre in Baharka, Erbil

WOMEN EARN AND SAVE MONEY

Women report average net daily earnings of $10.06 per day at graduation, compared to $3.41 at enrolment (USD, purchasing power parity*).

A group of programme participants in Iraq receive relaxation therapy. We have built strong partnerships with organisations who can offer psycho-social support, counselling, legal aid or shelter. Photo: Alison Baskerville
A group of programme participants in Iraq receive relaxation therapy. We have built strong partnerships with organisations who can offer psycho-social support, counselling, legal aid or shelter. Photo: Alison Baskerville

WOMEN INFLUENCE DECISIONS IN THEIR HOMES AND COMMUNITIES

94% of women at graduation reported involvement in decisions about whether to have another child, compared to 80% at enrolment.

Photo: Alison Baskerville
Photo: Alison Baskerville

WOMEN CREATE AND CONNECT TO NETWORKS FOR SUPPORT

58% of women at graduation reported having discussed community issues with other women, compared to 45% at enrolment.

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With your help, we can better support marginalised women to transform their lives and reach their full potential.

Seve and her family. Photo: Alison Baskerville
Photo: Alison Baskerville

Engaging Men

We are also working to engage the men in these communities as partners and allies in women’s social and economic empowerment.

By targeting male relatives, religious, and community leaders, Women for Women International is facilitating critical dialogues that are changing discriminatory attitudes and behaviours toward women.