Our project aims to build sustainable livelihoods for 200 vulnerable Jordanian youth (60% women, 40% men) in the formal economy of food and manufacturing. We aspire to grow our operations and expand our production lines of sweets and packaging and by doing so, create decent work opportunities for young people in Jordan.
The unemployment rate in Jordan reached 23.9% in 20202. This number reflects the huge skills gap between demand and supply and the lack of sufficient (decent) employment opportunities. These are major obstacles encountered especially by youth – both women and men. Women, however, face additional challenges because of cultural norms and expectations, rigid gender roles, and sexual harassment in the workplace. On top of that, many women do not have access to a reliable transportation system, further obstructing their chances of engaging in economic activities.
The food sector is one of the critical industries in Jordan, and one that has a high potential for offering employment opportunities. As our products have a high demand in the locals, regional, and international markets, we aim to expand our production and create jobs in the different parts of our operations for the Jordanian youth.
Our project model consists of three components:
1. Setting up a production line for packaging in Balqa. The line will create 50 job opportunities for youth from Balqa, Jerash, and Amman and offer jobs for women who work from home.
2. Setting up production lines for sweets in Madaba and Aqaba. The lines will create 50 job opportunities for youth from Madaba and Aqaba.
3. Build the capacity of 100 youth and link them with job opportunities in the sweets and food sector in Balqa, Jerash, Madaba, Aqaba, and Amman.
The project will provide decent work employment and fair income, as employed youth will have work contracts and be covered by social security.
Our efforts aim to offer an integrated solution to address the economic and cultural challenges. We will enhance youth’s technical and life skills, provide them with transportation to reach the workplace, and conduct community sessions to foster a positive mindset change in favor of women’s participation in work. We will also provide a safe and harassment-free work environment and share the knowledge of the integration of anti-harassment policies with other employers in the sector.
COVID-19 pandemic has hit the manufacturing sector very hard. We managed to navigate this unprecedented crisis as a company, and we take pride that we have not laid off any of our employees. However, to reach our desired impact of creating decent jobs and having gender sensitivity at the heart of our operations, we need extra funding. Therefore, CFYE’s funding will be crucial in supporting us to cover the cost of the training and acquire the necessary sewing equipment. The grant will also speed up our plans to enter new regional markets, increase our exports of sweets and environment–friendly packaging to the neighboring countries, creating additional decent jobs for Jordanian youth.