‘Work-at-home’ program for women is reworked

The Kingdom is to relaunch the "work-at-home" program for women in order to reduce female unemployment.

The Kingdom is to relaunch the “work-at-home” program for women in order to reduce female unemployment.

“A new, updated work-at-home program for women will be launched in a few weeks, while its Web portal will be up and running by the end of December this year,” a senior official at the Ministry of Labor said Thursday.

According to the official, the improvised programs, which seek to empower women by offering them the skills to work from home in order to acquire increased morale, self-respect, pride, work efficiency and financial independence, is part of an initiative by the ministry to reduce the unemployment rate among women, which is roughly estimated to be around 33 percent, according to media reports.

The jobs to be offered under the improvised program will be in telecommunications, travel agencies, IT, marketing, public relations and journalism. These jobs will also be open for individuals with special needs, the official said.

Earlier, a local daily quoted Fahad Al-Tukhaifi, undersecretary for special programs in the Ministry of Labor, as saying “the program has been redesigned to support an increase in work opportunities for women in a way that is also suitable for their family conditions and for the nature of our society.”

Welcoming the government’s approach toward female empowerment, Saudi student Hayat Al-Maskeen described the revised idea as a good solution toward women’s emancipation by seeking to solve the issue of high female unemployment. Another working woman, Dina Al- Fouad, also applauded the program, saying it will increase new employment opportunities for women, as well as for people with special needs who cannot always access regular forms of employment.

The work-at-home program for women was launched a few years ago. Now it is being revised, keeping in mind organizational and technical requirements, the official maintained.

Due to it’s rapid economic development, the Kingdom has taken many initiatives to aid female empowerment, such as creating the first all-female Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) service center, which was inaugurated recently in Riyadh. The center maintained a target of 3,000 local jobs for Saudi women to be created over the next three years. This seeks to complement the job localization efforts of the government, and is likely to strengthens economic diversification in line with government aims.


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