Alleviating Poverty and Achieving Self-Reliance

Poverty is one of the most social and economic problems afflicting the Palestinian society. It is the biggest challenge for the society where many factors have overlapped inside of it, and enhanced its scope and vision. Of the many factors for instance is the lack of employment opportunities which results with limited income and increased unemployment. The truth is that poverty no longer only includes the traditional indicators such as limited income, limited spending, limited consumption, and limited demand for goods and services. Poverty grew to include wider indicators as it expands to include the limited choices and limited participation. This means that poverty now is linked with education, health, political participation, and enjoying the benefits of human rights. Poverty reflects the failure to provide opportunities to all of the members of the society to use them to their full potential. Poverty means poor income, poor security and poor participation. These meanings are more apparent in the case of Palestinian women. Based on this we find that women are:

1. Disadvantaged in education, training and the sector of the society most infected with illiteracy. Public committee members doing embroidery. 72 Kalandia Camp handicraft Cooperative Fifty one year from continuous giving
2. Disadvantaged in employment and getting the profitable opportunities
3. Disadvantaged in public participation in areas of politics and economic activity
4. The least likely to receive loans, even for small business that may aid them.

Based upon what we mentioned, the Kalandia Camp Women’s Handicraft Cooperative has adopted the concept of Women’s Empowerment to be able to help women enter the job market assertively backed with training that they have achieved by the cooperative.

1. The concept of empowering women adopted by the cooperative relies on three correlated concepts
2. The concept of “Power for” which allows women to participate in the social, economic, and political decision making activities.
3. The concept of “Power with” which allows women to coordinate with other women to be able to achieve common goals.
4. The concept of “Power within” which enable women to be at peace, awareness and confidence with themselves.

Empowering women and improving their general livelihood are two critical concepts needed to realize sustainable development, equality between genders, and enabling women to realize their full potential. Also, it enables women to fully participate in the decision making process in politics, culture and economics as beneficiaries, participants and decision makers. The Cooperative has built its units and established it programs and projects in order to support its philosophy of empowering women and providing the best opportunities for her as a productive member of the society.

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