Sawsan Saleh, PALESTINE

The Association of Women’s Action for Training and Rehabilitation: Empowering women in rural areas of Palestine through production of aromatic herbs and essential oils

AOWA is one of the featured artisan distillers for botanica2020.

The Association of Women’s Action for Training and Rehabilitation (AOWA) is a development organization established in 1994 by a group of active women from the Women Action Federation to activate the role of Palestinian women and mobilize their capabilities so as to change the stereotypical look of women role in the society. AOWA has established 5 small income-generating projects for empowering women in 4 different areas for more than 4 years, which include as following:
1. Project for Soap production - Refugee Camp in Jenin
2. Project for Essentials Oils - Jenin
3. Project for Embroidery – Ramallah
4. Semi-Cooperative for Educational Game production - Women's Carpentry House in Old City of Hebron
5. Bakery Cooperative - Ras Karkar Village in Ramallah district.

The latest project the Association is establishing in rural areas in Jenin and Ras Karkar is a cooperative for agriculture to plant herbs and other aromatic plants in which these products will be used as raw material for making essentials oils and soap. The project launched in late 2018, distillation training is underway and the first harvest and distillation of locally grown peppermint was completed in the summer of 2019.