We Are Here!
The program is geared towards advising businesses owned by Iraqi women on the methods and means of obtaining contracts with Coalition forces. The women involved are all educated; one of our guests is a degreed environmental engineer. Many are widowed and supporting families through their hard work.
All of the women were very clear that opportunity under Saddam was zero. One woman characterized the current situation as a 50 and they hope that it will become 100.The program is mentored by Azza Hashim Khalil Humadi, employed by contractor Stanley Baker Hill. Azza is a daughter of an Iraqi career diplomat, married and has been living and working in Baghdad, Iraq since 2004.
It is obvious that the program is as much about social networking as business. The women keep in close touch, not just due to security concerns, but to help and advise each other.
“We are here” was the announcement from one of the guests. It was both a statement of fact and a matter of great pride. The women are finding that this program allows them to become someone that they could never have become under Saddam.
The Corps participants are hopeful that the success of this program will demonstrate to the Iraqi government that it, too, should be contracting with women owned companies. The women were reluctant to make comments concerning the government but were willing to say that they can count on the Americans to make payments on time.
One of the women was shy. Another was very proud of working in regions where security was an issue. All of them were very empowered by their businesses and the success they had achieved.
Current statistics show that the Corps and the Coalition are now doing $183 million worth of business with women-owned companies. The program is encouraging more Iraqi women to start their own businesses and seek contracts through conferences and other training methods.
Photo 1 by: Leo Zubritsky
Table of contents for Bloggers' Roundtable
- We Don’t Commute to Work Anymore
- Terror Investors Might Want to Look Elsewhere
- I Hear It’s Safe
- In Our Area the Taliban Are Paying More a Month
- Iraqi Police Progress
- Sept. 11 Conspirators Going to Trial
- Continued Courage and Committment
- The Year of Opportunity – 2008
- Competent, Capable, Effective Leadership
- Afghan Army Acts: Decisive, Overwhelming
- Iraqi Military Medical Services
- Dallas Reporting: Aid Mission to Georgia
- Military Integration Into NIMS
- Status Report From the Afghan South
- Status Report From the Afghan East
- Fourth Fleet Is About Partnerships
- Iraqi Police Primer
- Sons of Iraq Status Update
- Army Apologizes
- We Are Here!
- Yar! There Be Pirates!
- Cobra Gold 2009
- Our Best: Sergeant First Class Helen Gillespie
- Africa Partnership Station Comes to E Africa
- Building the Rule of Law in Afghanistan
- Sons of Iraq and the Iraqi Budget
- Air Force Combat Camera – Focus on the Fight
- Afghan Update for July 22, 2009
- The Army Goal: 1.5 Gigawatts of Renewable Energy
- Withdrawing from Iraq – some perspective
- Iraqi security update April 22 2010
- 2012 Federal Budget for Defense
- Pacific Command and the Pacific
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