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Making business ownership a reality for women in Gaza

© Global Affairs Canada

Care Canada’s Women and Youth Entrepreneurs Leading Change, West Bank and Gaza (OBADER) project is making young women’s dreams of owning their own business a reality.

Enas Skaik has a BA in business administration, but the high unemployment rate in Gaza kept her from finding a permanent job. With the support of the OBADER project, she and some friends were able to start a small business making embroidery and handmade products.

Skaik had initially launched her business “SABAYA” in May 2013, promoting her products on Facebook and other social media platforms, but sales were limited to her friends and family. In order to grow her business, she decided to join the OBADER project.

Through OBADER, she accessed business development services that helped her to expand SABAYA. Skaik now operates her own sewing and embroidery training centre and employs 4 full-time women employees and 8 part-time sewing and embroidery trainers. She has an additional 30 women on-call, working from home.

During 2019, Skaik averaged US$2,600 in monthly sales, but with OBADER’s support, her sales increased by 25%. Her profit margins increased because she is now able to do in-house product finishing in addition to offering training services. Not only has she been able to become financially secure, but she has been able to employ other women in a region with a high unemployment rate.

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