As a result of our efforts to change perceptions regarding women in work in the MENA region, we have been invited to speak during the round table discussion on “Women, entrepreneurship and insecurity”, hosted by Catherine Russell, Ambassador at Large for Global Women’s Issues at the U.S. Department of State. The discussion took place as part of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

Recognizing the important role women can play in sustaining peace through participation in the economy and in public life, CEO of World of Letters, Mayyada Abu Jaber, spoke about the unique challenges and opportunities women entrepreneurs and change makers face in Jordan. One of the main obstacles to women’s employment and entrepreneurship in Jordan are cultural barriers. WoL addresses these barriers through the Jo-Womenomics initiative. The initiative promotes positive messaging and awareness-raising on women’s participation in the economy through an expert working group, an online portal, and training of trainers for teachers and educators in Jordan.

During the round table, Mayyada also spoke about WoL’s upcoming role of being the MENA regional hub of girls’ education leaders, which is part of the global initiative “A Global Network of Girls’ Education Leaders” started the Brookings Institution. The MENA regional hub will connect individual girl’s education leaders and promote exchange and capacity building to strengthen efforts to promote mind-set change in favor for women in work in the MENA region.