Throughout Bank of Palestine continued efforts to provide non-financial advisory services for women within its banking awareness programs, the bank conducted eight workshops for various sectors during 2014, attended mostly by businesswomen and female entrepreneurs. These workshops were attended by more than 180 female entrepreneurs and business owners and youth from all around Palestine.

In addition to the workshops, Bank of Palestine conducted a number of introductory meetings and field visits to local institutions and associations, in order to inform them about the non-financial advisory services provided by the Bank, in addition to discussing potential collaboration with them, as the Bank collaborated with a number of institutions that support women and owners of small and medium enterprises to conduct these workshops, including Business Women Forum, Chamber of Commerce  in Bethlehem and Nablus, Tomorrow’s Youth Organization, Near East Foundation, INJAZ Palestine, Women’s Affairs Technical Committee and Leaders Organization.

The workshop focused on the Bank’s development and social roles and on clarifying the banking business concepts, including: what is a bank, the need for banking services and access to these services, accounts and their types, deposits, checks, types of facilitations, types of card and their usage and features, international financial transfers and their features, electronic banking services and other needed services.

Bank of Palestine believes in the importance of empowering Palestinian women and in encouraging them to effectively participate in the social and economic life with all its various sectors. The Bank believes that women’s empowerment begins with ensuring them equality in rights and job duties inside the Bank, providing a comfortable and compatible work environment for female employees and grant special privileges for working mothers, as the bank worked over the years to increase the number of female employees. By the end of year 2014, percentage of female employees reached 26%, compared to 17% in 2008. The bank aims to increase the percentage of female employees to 50% and increase the number of women in senior management positions.

In addition to supporting women outside the Bank, as the Bank aspires to reach all women segments, including business owners, employees and housewives, through the development of products and services that fit their need, seeking to improve the living standards for the Palestinian women, which will positively reflect on the Palestinian family, economy and society as a whole. The development of investment opportunities and the promotion of local economic growth are reinforced through empowerment and encouragement of women and by providing them with opportunities for further participation in the economic sector.

Bank of Palestine conducted these workshops as part of a program for non-financial advisory services offered by the Bank, which is an integrated package that aims to provide support and to raise awareness among the Bank’s customers and others, particularly women, as it covers all topics needed including issues related to finance and how to benefit from the banking services, in addition to providing various tips in different fields related to their lives and field of work.

These services help in building their skills and competencies and develop their businesses by connecting business owners with local or international experts, which provides the customers an opportunity to advance their businesses, find a partner and contribute in empowering women, youth and children in Palestine.