In the frame of “Women entrepreneurs program” and winners of “NOWARA Award 2012 for the best economic initiative implemented by women in rural areas”, a group of distinguished businesswomen who are supported by NOWARA have participated in the Garden Show & Spring Festival 2013.
The show, that has taken place from 28th May to 1st June 2013 in the magnificent park of the Beirut Hippodrome, has celebrated its 10-year anniversary of blossoming gatherings, colors, flowers and exciting events that made the Festival an ultimate and unique Lebanese outdoor way of life event. It has been held under the theme of “Water, source of life”, a main element in landscaping the garden, and a vital resource that needs to be preserved.
NOWARA was one of the 200 exhibitors that have participated in this show. The visitors have enjoyed various traditional food-processing products, and they have discovered the latest trends and tastes offered by the women participating along with the ultimate designs from garden stylists, nurseries, furniture galleries and many other exhibitors, which have fueled the visitors’ imagination with colorful inspiration.
The purpose of the participation at The Garden Show & Spring Festival was to enhance women’s entrepreneurial skills and provide opportunities in marketing, networking and exchange of experiences, attract targeted buyers and accelerate the buying process by gaining direct contact with a pre-qualified audience, gain access to an extensive public relations and advertising campaign, launch new products and generate media interest, and maximize the public relations opportunities. Women participating in this exhibition have represented a small group of women beneficiaries of NOWARA’s activities in the various Lebanese regions, and it has allowed the finalists of the NOWARA Award to present their products to the public. Mrs. Siham Ghanem – owner of “Konouz Lobnan”, Ms. Donia Bassil – owner of “Jouzouruna”, Ms. Maysun Bou Matar – owner of “Al-Kowara”, and Ms. Nariman al-Rifaii, representing the association “Al-Anamel al-Thahabiya”, had the unique opportunity to offer a wide range of their products and services, especially traditional, organic and natural food products free of artificial additives such as Pickles, Jams, Zhourat, Distilled Rose Water, Burghol Wheat, Kishik, Heritage Bread (Mallet Smid), Sweets, Thyme, Akkouk, Labneh, Pine Nuts, Dried Almonds and Walnuts, etc.
The show’s last days has also hosted the NOWARA Award 2012 ceremony, with the presence of the Minister of Agriculture, H.E. Dr. Hussein el-Hajj Hassan, and NOWARA’s President and former Minister of State, H.E. Mrs Wafa’a Dikah Hamze, who welcomed the attendance and the participants. They have also praised the role of NOWARA for its support to women in Agriculture, and outlined the important and positive effect of women entrepreneurs in rural areas on the agricultural sector and on the Lebanese economy, which can empower the Lebanese agriculture in the future especially in terms of flowers and local traditional food-processing products.
After the presentation of Ms. May Mezher and in the presence of Ms. Irene Viola representing the Italian NGO CTM Onlus, the Minister el-Hajj Hassan has awarded the four winners – Mrs. Donia Bassil from Jouzouruna, Mrs. Fatima Zein from Ajami Restaurant, Maysun Bou Matar from Al-Kowara, and Mrs. Nawfa Jaafar from Al-Amira Cooperative – and wished them further success in their work then he has inspected the exhibition stands, visiting the displays of the Ministry of Agriculture and NOWARA.
The women’s participation at The Garden Show 2013 is supported by the Lebanese Ministry of Agriculture, and it is in the frame of the Project “Socio-economic development of the rural population of southern Lebanon/ AID 9323/CTM/LBN” implemented by the Italian NGO CTM Onlus and NOWARA, in collaboration with IAM Bari, and co-funded by the Italian Development Cooperation.
Article written by: Nader Daher.