Iraqi Women’s Engagement Team Members Visit With Iraqi Females
Efforts to reach out to local Iraqi females have been limited in the past because of cultural differences. Iraqi Females are reticent and will not often speak one on one with male members of the United States Military, or to males in general outside their family units. This has made gathering information about their issues and things they need inside their communities more difficult.
Because of this, there have been efforts to form teams of female soldiers to reach out. United States Marine Corp ladies, who are tasked, to visit and try and get to know members of the female Iraqi community on a one to one basis have formed the Iraqi Women’s Engagement team.
Five members from the 1st Marine Group Logistics Team, and two Iraqi female interpreters recently set out to meet with Iraqi female community members. They started at one end of the Al Taqaddum village and began to go house to house, knocking on doors.
They went door to door, and spoke to women, who often came to the door with their children in tow. This is an effort to take a census, but also to find out what issues and subjects is a concern to the Iraqi females.
It is believed that the voice of Iraqi female citizens needs to be heard more, but they are hesitant to speak to anyone, especially if the people attempting are male. It is for this reason that the Iraqi Women’s Engagement Team was formed.
“It was very eye opening, a very good experience,” said Sergeant Veronica Deleon. Sgt Deleon is a member of the IWET team that went door to door. “We found that the Iraqi ladies are just like us, they want a future, to raise their children in safety, and to have opportunities just like the rest of us do,” said Sgt Deleon.