Rabat, Morocco (TMT)- The Association of Women for Rural Development will launch its set of trainings for 100 rural women beneficiaries from 10 cooperatives in the Middle Atlas region from January 9th to 15th at the Al Akhawayn University Executive Education and Regional Development Center (EERDC), in partnership with the US Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) and the EERDC.
The workshops will bring together 100 rural women from impoverished areas of the Middle Atlas region such as El Lhajeb, Azrou, Imouzzer, Ifrane and Tizguit who will participate in the “Empowering Women in the Atlas” initiative, a one-year program for economic growth and sustainable development. The project beneficiaries were selected based on their knowledge about local resources and productive activities, the quality and diversity of their products as well as the feasibility of their intended income-generating projects.
The “Empowering Women in the Atlas” trainings will take place from January 9th to 15th at the Al Akhawayn University Executive Education and Regional Development Center (EERDC). They will be conducted in the Moroccan Arabic dialect “Darija” by expert trainers who have experience working with rural women and cooperatives in the Middle Atlas region. Qualified translators will also help facilitate the sessions by translating key terms from Arabic to Tamazight and conducting performance evaluations at the end of each session, to effectively measure the direct impact of the full week of trainings on the future rural women leaders and their ecological projects.
The objective of the EWA workshops is to contribute to raising the project beneficiaries’ awareness and building their capacities in three main fields: Entrepreneurship, Project Management and Environmental awareness. First, the entrepreneurship workshops will aim to enable women to recognize their productive activities as potential income generating activities, equip them with the knowledge on how to create and maintain cooperatives and how to launch income generating projects and approach investors. In addition to that, the Business Education workshops will also help build the participating women’s capacity to understand the basics of business management, financial autonomy and will, therefore, train them to operate and optimize their income generating projects. Ultimately, environmental protection workshops will equip the beneficiaries with knowledge about climate and environmental issues to enable them recognize the importance and role of natural resources on their lives as well as alternative usages and sustainable practices relevant to their activities.
Speaking ahead of the event, the founder of the initiative and Director of the Association of Women for Rural Development, Lamia Bazir, commented: “We are delighted to announce the launch of our training sessions for 100 rural women entrepreneurs in the Middle Atlas region in partnership with the US Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI). The objective of the trainings is to invest in future rural women leaders and entrepreneurs in order to contribute to raising their awareness and building their capacity to optimize their ecological initiatives and small income generating projects in the Middle Atlas. This project is based on the belief that every human being and citizen – regardless of geographical location and financial means – has a potential to optimize. For this purpose, “Empowering Women in the Atlas” goes beyond the limits of isolation or poverty and invests in women who have the potential to contribute more effectively to the economic growth and sustainable development of their territories».
The “Empowering Women in the Atlas” trainings will take place during a full week, every day from January 9th to January 15th, at the Al Akhawayn University Executive Education and Regional Development Center from 10am to 3pm. The workshops will include a basic introduction to each topic, followed by practical group exercises and competitions to measure the direct impact on the participants. Interactive sessions for women beneficiaries to share their lessons learnt will also take place at the end of every session as well as during the working lunches and coffee breaks everyday from 12:30 to 1:30pm and 3:00 to 3:30pm.
The EWA project specifically targets the marginalized areas in the Middle Atlas region. It aims to promote the leadership of rural women by raising awareness and taking concrete measures towards their integration in the country’s economic growth and sustainable development. The project includes workshops and interactive training sessions as well as a full support in the creation and the optimization of cooperatives, through the provision of equipment, seed funds, and the access to markets for commercialization purposes.