Egypt country with positive Mental Health Initiatives for Women: World Bank Report



Mon, 08 Mar 2021 - 12:58 GMT


Mon, 08 Mar 2021 - 12:58 GMT

Women Business and the Law 2021- World Bank Report

Women Business and the Law 2021- World Bank Report

CAIRO – 8 March 2021: Egypt is mentioned as one of the countries globally that took positive strides in protecting the health and safety of women in dire times, as per the “Women, Business and the Law 2021” report published by the World Bank Group, according to Minister of International Cooperation Rania A. Al-Mashat.


Al-Mashat noted that while the world was taken aback by the COVID-19 pandemic’s health and global economic crisis, many households around the world struggled financially and this was coupled with health anxieties creating increased mental stress. 


“The Arab Republic of Egypt launched the ‘Our Mental Health Is a Priority’ initiative in May 2020. With the help of psychologists and professional institutions, this initiative has supported the mental health of Egyptian women and has raised the public’s awareness of mental health during this challenging time,” writes the report. 


Egypt’s “Our Mental Health is a Priority” initiative was launched in May 2020 in collaboration between the National Council for Women (NCW) and UN Women. It’s focused on raising awareness on the mental health issues caused by the pandemic, and on supporting the mental health of Egyptian women in specific.


Together with the Ministry of Social Solidarity, the Ministry of International Cooperation with the USAID launched a community outreach program supporting the Egyptian Red Crescent’s network of 30,000 volunteers and health professionals. The agreement aimed to conduct community outreach and help prevent the spread of COVID-19, as well as build ERC’s capacity to respond to future crises. Prioritising the importance of mental wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic, the USAID also assisted ERC in providing psycho-social support services to health workers so that they would continue to serve the public.


“It is very important to know that when you’re vulnerable you’re not alone” Al Mashat expressed through social media channels, stating that mental health is something that affects us all particularly during the pandemic. She added, all stakeholders, including civil society, are working together to address the heal and economic challenges. 


Women are at the forefront of the Government of Egypt’s development plan, leading on socio-economic efforts within its reform agenda. By the end of the month of February 2021, the Ministry of International Cooperation and the National Council for Women launched the Action Plan for implementing the “Closing the Gender Gap Accelerator” in collaboration with the private sector, and in partnership with the World Economic Forum to unleash the full potential of Egyptian women. 


The action plan consists of 10 pillars, each includes several tasks and sub-actions for all stakeholders to implement, bringing their own expertise to the gender agenda plan. The pillars cover a wide array of fields where development is necessary to ensure women’s inclusion: empowering work regulations, leadership mentorship and protocols, educational reskilling and preparation, digitalization of businesses, and social inclusion measures and policies.


This highlights Egypt’s continued commitment to applying needed policies and structural reforms to push the gender agenda and empower women, and it also sheds light on the importance of adopting  multi-stakeholder partnerships across the public and private sectors in generating positive change and development. 


According to the “Women, Business, and The Law 2021” World Bank report, Egypt scores an average 45 out of 100 for its WBL index, measuring the economic empowerment of women. The index consists of mobility, workplace, pay, parenthood, entrepreneurship, assets, and pension. Egypt scored highest in pension with 100 points, followed by 75 in both entrepreneurship and workplace. 


The Ministry of International Cooperation’s 2020 Annual Report titled “International Partnerships for Sustainable Development: Writing the Future in a Changing Global Dynamic” cites that 34 projects, worth $3.3 billion, are being executed to achieve the targets of gender equality, with the top targeted sectors including Health (20%), Education (14%), and Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) (15%).



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