DUBAI: Shamsaha, a non-profit organization that advocates for the empowerment and protection of women throughout the Middle East, has launched a new mobile app that, for the first time, offers free, 24/7 crisis-care services to vulnerable women in the region.
The organization provides coaching on issues such as sub-conscious bias and violence against women, and trains healthcare workers to provide services for women, especially those who have been subjected to violence and other forms of abuse.
It also provides round-the-clock free and confidential support services, in English and Arabic, for survivors of domestic violence. The new mobile app makes easier than ever for women across the region to access them, by connecting them instantly with Shamsaha’s trained and certified volunteers based in Bahrain.
Through the app, women can receive emotional support, advice and information, along with referrals to legal and therapy services. It also includes a variety of resources and support tools, along with details of Shamsaha’s fundraising activities and training opportunities.
The organization is working to expand its presence across the Arab region and the launch of the app represents the first phase of this project. It will be followed by the establishment of in-person support services in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Oman, in collaboration with local partners.
“When I founded Shamsaha as a non-profit in Bahrain, I hoped to support as many survivors of abuse as possible and now our certified and culturally sensitive support services will be available for women across the Middle East,” said Mary-Justine Todd, the organization’s founder and executive director.
The organization’s regional expansion and development of its mobile app is being funded by the L’Oreal Fund for Women, which was launched by the cosmetics company in 2020 to support and empower vulnerable women worldwide. The development of the app was also supported by the US and British embassies in Bahrain.
“A great deal of hard work, commitment and support has gone into developing our mobile application,” said Shamsaha’s advisory president Munira Al-Shaikh.
“We want to thank everyone who dedicated their efforts to making this launch a success, including our most valued partners. We would also like to extend our gratitude to the community in Bahrain and the wider Arabian Gulf for welcoming this unique program and for furthering women’s empowerment and protection activities.”
The launch of the mobile app is in line with Shamsaha’s commitment to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, specifically the aim of achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls.