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EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian crisis

"During the training sessions, I was taught to raise my head high and be proud. I was also told that I should be looking after myself and try to secure an income, so as not to depend on anybody else."

Oum Walid, 32, is from Deraa in Syria. She had to leave her home country in 2014. She now lives in Jordan with her disabled husband and five children.

“We went through economic hardship. It was hard to adapt to the new situation. My husband can’t work because of a disability in his foot,” she recalls.

Challenges and hardship did not deter Oum Walid from making a change. Learning that the LEADERS project was offering training sessions in her area, she seized the opportunity and trained as a beautician.

She explains why it was so important for her to take that step:

“I have always wanted to work before, even when I was in Syria. These sessions help me network for my future business in the beauty industry.”

Oum Walid was taught to raise her head high and be proud. She confidently states that sessions like these have made a significant difference in her life and that of her fellow Syrian refugee female friends. The workshops allowed them to grow professionally and, most importantly, secure a home-based income.

She adds: “Women seek to look beautiful. They like to feel special. It has an impact on the way they feel about themselves.”

Oum Walid did not wait until the end of the training sessions to kick her business into motion. She’s already prepared her house and is ready to welcome customers.

“My ambition is that one day these women I met through the workshop will become customers of mine!” she concludes with a beautiful smile.