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Princess Basma reiterates support
15 March, 2007

AMMAN (JT) — HRH Princess Basma on Tuesday reiterated her support for all initiatives that foster reproductive health and raise awareness of gender-related issues.


In her address at the closing ceremony of a nine-day regional training workshop, “Advocating for Gender and Reproductive Health,” Princess Basma commended the participants’ decision to establish a regional network to reflect and support the objectives of the Gender and Reproductive Health Programme.


“The establishment of the regional network on gender and reproductive health will foster family ties,” she said.


The Princess stressed the positive impact the network will have on the issues of gender and reproductive health, as it will involve many individuals and concerned institutions. 


Sponsored by Queen Zein Al Sharaf Institute for Development (ZENID) in cooperation with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Kingdom this year hosted the programme’s final workshop, ending a five-year-long initiative.


Princess Basma commended JICA’s support over the past five years, “which has been instrumental to the success of this programme”.


JICA’s partnership with the Jordanian Hashemite Fund for Human Development (JOHUD) dates back 10 years and includes their efforts to support development projects in Jordan, especially in the area of gender, reproductive health and advocacy.


The initiative, under which meetings were held in other regional countries on an annual basis, focused on gender disparities and reproductive health.


Twenty -four participants from Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen, took part in the workshop.


The aim of this particular workshop, which this year included decision-makers from each country, was to collectively develop an action plan for advocating gender and reproductive health by focusing on the means to deliver  key messages to decision-makers and donors from the respective countries.


This year’s fifth regional training workshop addressed gender disparities and reproductive health issues through the involvement of government and nonprofit development organisations operating at the community level.


Participants worked together to develop an action plan for advocating gender and reproductive heath awareness in their respective countries.


“This workshop represents five years of working with regional health practitioners who have shed light on gender, reproductive health and advocacy with a focus on the national context,” ZENID Director Huda Haqqi said at the ceremony.


The action plan also focused on empowering young people in the community, allowing them better access, information and services in the realm of sexual and psychological fields. Participants explored creative ways to reach young people, who represent the largest demographic bracket of citizens in each of the countries involved.


“Over the years, we have witnessed positive results at the regional level,” Haqqi said, adding that, “exchange in knowledge and experiences is still happening and projects on the ground are evident”.


Country representatives were selected by ZENID from previous workshops conducted under the programme during the past four years and who have training in the field of gender relations and reproductive health.


Established in 1994 through JOHUD, ZENID comprises the Social Development Training Centre, the Princess Basma Women’s Resource Centre and the Development Information unit, providing a platform for the implementation of social development programmes in the region.