Building skills and promoting employment for Jordan’s female plumbers

Safaa is one of Jordan’s few female plumbers. She runs her own company and was recently supported by the ILO through training to help develop her skills and boost her employability.

Article | 14 March 2019
Irbid, Jordan (ILO News) Safaa runs her own company in Irbid where she has a group of around 20 Jordanian and Syrian female plumbers working with her. 

While Jordan only has a small number of female plumbers, Safaa says demand for women in this profession is growing. “Having female plumbers has solved a big problem,” she said. “Women can now have repairs done in their homes at any time.”

Safaa and her team are constantly busy conducting maintenance work, repairs and installations in all aspects relating to plumbing.

A few months ago, they took part in an ILO-supported training programme in electricity, which she says is important for any plumber to have due to the strong linkage between the two professions.

“We used to get calls saying that people are getting electrocuted by water in their homes. It was therefore important for us to understand the problems between water and electricity,” said Safaa. “We asked the International Labour Organization to help organise a training for us in electricity. (Having a training in electricity) really impacts our work because there is a strong link between plumbers and electricians.”

The programme gave the plumbers practical and theoretical training in domestic electrical maintenance. At the end of the programme, participants were awarded with skills certificates, in efforts to boost their employment opportunities.

Safaa conducts her own training sessions for women in her field of profession. She recently jointed an ILO Training of Trainers (ToT) programme to help her build better skills in coaching. The ToT programme provides participants with adequate learning methods, techniques and approaches that are needed to enable them to better transfer knowledge to other learners and apprentices. 

The training was implemented as part of a US-funded project that supports thousands of Syrians and Jordanians to enhance their skills, or formally acknowledge their existing skills through training programmes and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) certificates across various sectors.