Under an initiative of the group "Hathihi Hayati” [This My Life] a "Dakakin [Small Shops] Bazaar" was held in the Jordanian capital, Amman last month in which products, handcrafts, and accessories, in addition to foodstuff were showcased.
Umm Abdel Salam, one of the participants in the bazaar, displays her handmade accessories and traditional jewelery. She tells Rozana that she was forced to find a source of income after becoming a refugee in Jordan, despite her lack of any previous work experience.
She then explains: "I wanted to help my husband and children, so I bought some tools and started to teach myself."
Umm Jawad seeks to commercialize her handicrafts, stressing that her embroidery hobby—considered an art—is incomparable to machinery products. This skill she acquired years ago, became helpful in the current circumstances.
Project Manager, Tariq Hassan, told Rozana that the aim is to provide an opportunity to the female refugees to showcase and market their products to customers. He pointed out that the bazaar came after a series of training courses to women groups.
He explains: "Within the very limited resources available to us, we launched this project, and are working to secure the location, as well as market requirements, such as equipment and arrangements free of charge," he said, adding: "The project comprises a versatile range of products—Accessories, embroidery, as well as foodstuffs such as Magdoos [pickled stuffed eggplants], yoghurt, and cheese."
He pointed out that bazaar attendance level was good, hoping that the idea would grow and evolve in the future, to be adopted by other charities.
Participants faced significant challenges in the bazaar, especially in achieving a balance between the costly raw materials, and marketing their products at reasonable prices. The biggest difficulty, however, remained in performing any marketing at all given their feeble financial capabilities and resources.