UNFPA hands over 11 women centres in Duhok to the Ministry of Labour & Social Affairs
UNFPA and its partner Harikar Organisation handed over 11 Women Community Centres to the Directorate of Labour and Social Affairs in Duhok.
The Women Community Centres were first established by UNFPA in 2013 amid the humanitarian crisis, during the war against ISIL. The centres, which provided psychosocial support, case management, life skills activities and awareness sessions to women and girls, were located in 11 camps for refugees (4) and internally displaced persons (7).
The handover took place in presence of Dr Sherzad Hamed, Director General of the Labour and Social Affairs in Duhok, Mr Himyar Abdulmoghni, Deputy Representative of UNFPA in Iraq and Mr Salah Yaseen, Head of Harikar Organisation, in the presence of government and governorate representatives, staff from the Directorate of Labour and Social Affairs and social workers from the Women Community Centres.
Speaking during the ceremony, Dr Hamed, said:
"We are happy to take on these centres to help the women and girls in our community. I thank UNFPA for their partnership and for the ongoing building and strengthening of the capacity of the Directorate's staff. Our collaboration will ensure we maintain good quality services to all women and girls requiring assistance at these Women Community Centres."
For his part, Mr Abdulmoghni emphasised that this handover comes as part of UNFPA transition strategy that was developed in full consultation with all stakeholders to ensure the continuance of gender-based violence and women empowerment related services to women and girls in camps:
"The importance of transitioning these centres from NGO's management to the Government is to ensure sustainability of the confidential multi-sectoral response and services, including medical, psychosocial and legal services for GBV survivors and confirm the government accountability to the most vulnerable women and girls."
The Deputy also thanked Harikar Organisation for being a key partner in the provision of quality gender-based violence and reproductive health services to women and girls amid consecutive crises in Iraq since 2013 to date.
In 2022, UNFPA will hand over another 11 Women Community Centres to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs across the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, in addition to the centres already handed over.