Two Women, One Refugee Camp.
In 2014, Noora Sharrab and Jacqueline Sofia began working with a motivated group of women in Jordan’s Jerash “Gaza” Refugee Camp to build the foundation for a social enterprise that would educate, employ and empower the community’s women and girls. Today, Sitti maintains its commitment to providing fair wage employment to its all-female staff, as well as providing financial and in-kind support to several beneficiary programs that contribute towards the enterprise’s social mission. The Sitti product line, which began with a signature square bar of handmade, cold-pressed olive oil soap, has since grown to a line of 10+ popular skincare and home good items; including curated products through partnerships with ethical brand names. Sitti has evolved into a multi-national brand that can be found in the shops of retailers and distributors across the Middle East and North America.
Noora Sharrab is the co-founder and CEO of Sitti. Sharrab, whose ancestral family is from Gaza, has always felt a special bond with the women of Jerash “Gaza” Refugee Camp in Jordan. As the co-founder and regional director of Hopes for Women in Education, an international NGO and one of several Sitti beneficiaries, she has worked tirelessly to provide educational opportunities to refugee girls and women throughout the MENA region. In addition to her work in Jerash, Sharrab also worked for several years in humanitarian development with the United Nations regional Jordan office. She received her M.A. in Political Science with a specialization certificate in Forced Migration and Refugee Studies, as well as her B.A. in Political Science from York University. She currently lives with her family in Toronto, and works between the Middle East and Canada.
Jacqueline Sofia is the co-founder of Sitti. Sofia first arrived in Jordan as a Fulbright Fellow (’11-12) and has since worked closely with the women of Jerash “Gaza” Refugee Camp, UNRWA and other partner organizations in Jordan, to provide health education and skill development programming to women and families in the camp community; with the objectives to preserve culture, increase upward economic mobility and empower women. In addition to her work for Sitti, she is a documentary photographer and audio storyteller between the US and the Middle East.
Jackie and Noora continue to be inspired by the thousands of women in Jerash Refugee Camp whose ultimate goal is to create a better life for themselves and their community.