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January 21, 2009
Women in Jordan head to work as economy sours

In the conservative Muslim region of southern Jordan, more and more women are leaving the home for the first time and going to work — largely out of economic necessity. The number of women in the workforce has more than doubled over the past five years.

Worldfocus correspondent Kristen Gillespie reports from Jordan.

Read her blog post about her experience: Divorce outcasts women from Jordan’s social structure.




true and nicely written, looking forward to see whats going on and not known


Very interesting report.


Kristen Gillespie’s reporting from Jordan for World Focus is some of the best journalism I have seen from the region in a long time! I have had the pleasure of living in Jordan for many years and these reports really illustrate the reality of everyday life there and the brave struggle of Jordan’s people — especially women — to lead normal, productive, fulfilling lives. Thanks so much for these excellent reports.


I hope to see more of such reporting, thank you Kristen Gillespie and World Focus.


I like the report


I like the report, it’s really a reflection to the most of people lives here in Jordan.


Very nice article and so descriptive, I liked the way that the lives of women in Jordan is reflected, it is good that the society’s view for women to enter the working field is improving, but that doesn’t mean that men must stay at home, it is a shared process in order to ease life and increase the family’s income. On the other hand, and since that work must always be delivered in a good way, wages must be similar for men and women, because after all, wages must meet the work.

Hope to view more articles about the middle east in general and about Jordan and Palestine in particular, specially that the work and equality revolution is increasing in both these countries.


Well done, very interesting and insightful report. Keep them coming, looking forward to more of your perspicacious communications.


This story is so true, thanks for showing the good and bad sides of women working, it’s nice to see that women are allowed to work and it is not a shame, but it is still so sad that all these women efforts are measured with low wages. Women and men must cooperate to overcome life’s problems and cooperation is everything, the percentage of women with degrees is getting higher in Jordan, and as I believe, it doesn’t matter if the employee is a male or female, the wage must meet the work and the given quality.

Thanks for this great opportunity to show the world a little about us in Jordan, and there are still lots of stories to be told about the progress of women rights in the Middle East and in Jordan, specially that lately new organizations are created to help women to work from there homes or find them work in companies or factories.


Very interesting window on the south of Jordan. I wounder how the men there can just be and not do!


Very well written and presented. The narrative, interviews and supporting pictures all flow into a cohesive, informative story that leave the viewer with a clear and inciteful picture of an interesting part of Jordanian life.


Dana Wild Reserve & Wild Jordan are two of the successful projects in Jordan and I am proud to see so many women invloved and behind these successes.
It is good to see that these men from such a conservative background realize the importance of the role played by women in society.


Hello Kristen,

I love the sensitive way you shed the light on some uncovered aspects of our daily life… especially the women who are working hard to achieve their goals…
The unemployment of men in these places is due to the nature of their lives, they used to be shepherds and look after their sheep, and being illiterate made it even harder for them to find jobs in a place that being a father of 10 is only normal… add to all of that the silly way they see such jobs done by their wives is beneath them… all of these things led women to act in a way that is new to the society but essential to their families… I look forward your next story…

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