Supporting underprivileged young Palestinian women graduating from university.
“Entering university had provided me with self-confidence and the ability to deal with other people and to understand their points of view and learn from them. I started looking at life from a different angle that is now filled with hope and enthusiasm for a better future.” – Ghadeer Muzahem, graduated in Accounting from Al-Quds University in 2012 with the support of the Womanity Foundation
In the Palestinian Territories education of women is valued as proven by the fact that it has one of the best female literacy rates in the developing world. Women from poor backgrounds, however, often miss out on the opportunity to pursue higher education. As a result, they have fewer training and educational chances to develop their skills and gain economic independence and remain trapped in poor economic conditions without opportunities to lift themselves and their families out of poverty.
In collaboration with the Women’s Studies Centre (WSC), Womanity developed a project to provide financial support to underprivileged young women and cover their university tuition fees. The aim is to boost supported women’s chances of finding employment by helping them to complete courses at colleges and universities.
The women selected must meet socio-economic criteria, have graduated successfully from high school and maintain high academic scores. Representatives from the WSC visit each family before approving a scholarship, follow-up with the academic performance of students and pay directly to the Universities the tuition fees due. A special scholarship has further been established for young girls living in refugee camps.
The annual scholarships covered the costs for one semester per year in order to encourage some funding from the students or other sources.
Since 2009, 21 students have received scholarships for one semester per year, 20 of them successfully graduated.
Of the young women who have graduated, some have already entered the workplace and are involved in careers such as teaching, or as employees in pharmacy, non-governmental organizations and private sector, or are working as volunteers and civil servants. Others have progressed to additional higher education.
WSC were also able to expand the project and fund, with additional sources, an average of additional 55 scholarships every year.
The Women’s Study Centre (WSC)