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Women in household create new livelihoods


In light of the economic-financial crisis and Covid-19, household-women of Lebanon are seeking new sources of home-based livelihoods in order to alleviate the present economic crisis, especially after the collapse of the national currency and the 80% erosion of salaries. Al Akhbar daily brought to light the stories of a group of women who set up their own businesses, including Umm Ali, 30, who turned her house into a nursery to assist her husband who works at a restaurant. From the LBP 750,000 she makes every month, Umm Ali buys the basics for her family. Wafaa Balhas, 35, from Siddiqin in the South, invested in the land adjacent to her house, when her husband’s aluminum installation business was severely hit by the pandemic. Wafaa is growing moolookhiya, and lately has added fava beans, green peas and onions that are being planted in a leased plot of land, that she then sells in the market of her town. Jumana Qteish, married to a taxi driver, lamented that her husband spends all his earnings on the car mechanics. Boasting to Al Akhbar reporter, she said she decided to sell liquid laundry detergents online, where she buys one gallon for LBP 22,000 and sells it for LBP 25,000. Market prices, Jumana added, are negatively affected by the rise of the dollar, thus often eroding her mere LBP 3,000 profit margin. Likewise, Umm Jawad, 50, has put her cooking skills to work, and started preparing take-away meals and dishes, like kibbeh, cakes and maamoul for the Eid, in addition to the Lebanese mezze recipes. Work is tough and income little, Umm Jawad said, yet it covers some basic necessities. As for Fatmeh Ibrahim, 24, she took advantage of her soap making skills, which she acquired during a training workshop in order to start a business which allows her to attend to three children at home. (The news feature can be found on the following link: (Al Akhbar, April 1, 2021)

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