Women of Zarqa defy taboos by becoming plumbers

March 09, 2016

Thirty women from Zarqa Governorate have finished a customized business planning workshop to help them realize their ambitions in becoming skillful plumbers. The Millennium Challenge Account – Jordan (MCA-Jordan), which implements a $275 million Compact financed by the US Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), has organized a four-day (March 6-9, 2016) business workshop for these women on a variety of topics such as the pluming business, networking value, marketing strategies, financial requirements, and small business startups. 
“As part of realizing the aspirations of these women, the workshop comes after two significant phases; the first one being the practical and theoretical training we have conducted for them with Vocational Training Corporation, and the second one being the on-job training they received with our infrastructure contractors,” said Deputy CEO, Project Management at MCA-Jordan, Eng. Nazir Abu Arqoub. 
He also added, “The workshop was designed to equip these women with skills that will assist them in setting up their own businesses and networking with sponsoring institutions.” 
The Women Plumber Program is an initiative started by MCA-Jordan in 2015 to provide income generating opportunities for marginalized groups, particularly women. While plumbing is a profession dominated by men, the program comes as a strong statement about the ability of the opposite gender to defy taboos and social boundaries in order to achieve their dreams. 
To assist the women plumbers in starting up their businesses, MCA-Jordan handed them toward the end of the workshop a tool box, a smartphone with credit, business cards, and flyers. Adequate promotion and financial support, key to building a successful business, will be facilitated through linkages between the women plumbers and the women’s NGO network of Zarqa, as well as microfinance institutions and other existing networks and programs. MCA-Jordan will continue during that time to offer mentorship and coaching for these women to ensure their success. 

The Women Plumber Program is part of the Water Smart Homes Activity (WSHs-A), one of MCA-Jordan’s projects, which aims to improve in-house water management among Zarqa Governorate’s households through an outreach campaign to increase their knowledge of good water management practices, and a direct intervention to assist poor families in conducting in-home water system repairs.