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ARDD report sheds light on women’s challenges amid crises

By JT - Nov 25,2020 - Last updated at Nov 25,2020

Women leadership must be brought into focus, whether in community-based projects, aid response or regarding long-term development goals, according to the Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (Photo courtesy of ARDD)

AMMAN — As the region has been affected by a succession of crises, the most recent being the COVID-19 pandemic, women are the most affected, according to the Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (ARDD).

In their report titled “Jordanian Women in the Context of Conflict Prevention and Resolution”, the ARDD said that only 10 per cent responded positively when asked if living conditions enable women to realise their ambitions in life. 

The report also stated that 81 per cent of respondents said they struggle with unemployment, while 83 per cent think that society considers them emotional and weak.

Despite the adversities, women are vital to the protection of their families, but also to addressing crises, and if their capabilities are not fully taken advantage of, society as a whole stands to lose, ARDD said in the statement. 

Not capitalising on women’s potentials, by depriving them of the possibility to grow and progress, means wasting an opportunity to create a critical mass of women and men that can contribute to maintaining social peace and eliminating violence and extremism, read the statement.

Women still face legislative, structural and societal discrimination and that limits their ability to work towards finding ways to limit the repercussions of crises, on themselves and society at large, the ARDD said.

The organisation said that it is time to work together to address the roots of extremism, violence and conflict in the region. 

Women leadership must be brought into focus, whether in community-based projects, aid response or regarding long-term development goals, and the absence of justice and equal opportunities for different groups within society must be pointed out, the statement continued. 

The state’s vital role in preserving security and peace can only be strengthened if women and youth are empowered to engage in the different efforts towards that end, to facilitate media’s work to replace hate speech and dismissive discourses with objective, awareness-raising, dialogues and if freedom of speech for all, especially the youth, is guaranteed, the ARDD said. 

To prevent violent extremism and ensure the stability and security of the community, a comprehensive approach of engaging women and youth must be adopted, buttressed by media, legislators, government and civil society, according to the statement. 

Extremism and violence undermine the collective work towards ensuring familial stability and community security; the spread of extremism and violence during a crisis weakens the efforts to achieve sustainable development and uphold the rule of law, the organisation said.

ARDD CEO Samar Muhareb said: “Civil society must stand by governments and authorities in combating violent extremism and collaborate to address their causes, to prevent them, and take part in planning and policy-making processes. Each of us has a role to strengthen our community and attain peace in our homes, schools and the streets.”

The “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence” campaign is launched on November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and ends on December 10, Human Rights Day. ARDD takes part with a number of events, coordinated with the Jordanian National Commission for Women, United Nations SGBV SWG working group, International Institute for Nonviolent Action, United Nations Development Programme, UN Women and partners from the Jordanian National NGOs Forum (JONAF).


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