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Empowering Women; Changing Lives

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WHO Mental Health team members with beneficiariesWHO Mental Health team members with beneficiaries

Vocational training aims to develop the skills of mental health service users

Throughout the world, people with mental health problems are faced with stigmatization and exclusion from their communities, often creating a feeling of hopelessness in the individuals. This exclusion can hinder them from reaching their full potential and being productive in their social, vocational and personal lives. Local Jordanian organization ‘Families Development Association’ has created a number of key activities that aim to build capacity and empower women in Jordanian society, including those challenged with mental health problems.

These initiatives aim to give service users improved self-confidence. The month of January witnessed the culmination of such initiatives, where the Families Development Association concluded a three-month and a six-month ‘vocational rehabilitation course’ in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and WHO Jordan. These courses were specifically designed to target women in the Istishariah and Al Hashmi community mental health centres by developing their skills in knitting, weaving, computer skills and other abilities.

Such activities are part of the rehabilitation component of comprehensive treatment plans that are developed for each service user at the Ministry of Health community mental health centres, technically supported by WHO Jordan. The courses aimed to empower beneficiaries and enhance their personal development, productivity and financial independence. In addition, these courses also helped in fostering positive social interactions and activities among the participants.

This month, WHO was pleased to join its collaborating partners in organizing a graduation ceremony for the 25 women who attended the training courses. They were provided with the tools needed to support their integration as active and productive members of society. The ceremony allowed the women to celebrate their achievements and gave them a sense of accomplishment. They will now take the skills learned back into their own community. The training courses were designed to empower the women, not merely in the skills taught, but also by building their confidence, and giving them a voice.

Key health-related statistics

Total population in thousands 10 053
Total expenditure on health (% of general government expenditure) 13.7
Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births) 58
Primary health care units and centres (per 10 000 population) 6.9
Life expectancy 74.3

Source: Framework for health information systems and core indicators for monitoring health situation and health system performance, 2018

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