A women’s co-operative in Jordan has won the support of the sustainable tourism development arm of The Travel Corporation.

The initiative by the not for profit TreadRight Foundation means that holidaymakers on TTC brands Contiki, Insight Vacations and Trafalgar will visit the Iraq al-Amir Women’s Co-operative as part of their itineraries.

Every traveller on one of the Jordan itineraries will have the opportunity to meet local women, hear their stories and learn about the work they are doing to support the community.

Travellers will be able to contribute by purchasing items handcrafted by the women and see first-hand how travel ‘matters’.

Unemployment for women in Jordan is at around 33% in urban areas and even higher in rural areas.

The co-operative was founded in 1993 with the goal of making the women in the region financially independent in addition to raising their standard of living and preserving local heritage.

Managed and run by local women, Iraq al-Amir has provided training projects on heritage handicrafts for women from all villages of the Wadi Seer district. The products are then sold in the gift shop, as well as online.

The TreadRight Foundation has unveiled a video highlighting the organisation’s new project in Jordan hosted by TreadRight ambassador Celine Cousteau.

Jordanian sustainable tourism consultant Muna Haddad said: “The TreadRight Foundation is supporting the Iraq al-Amir Co-operative and together we’ll be working with this co-operative to upgrade the gift shop, as well as provide merchandising expertise, and allow the group to expand their food services, creating more income opportunities for the co-operative’s members.

“We’re working together to help the co-operative to become a viable business.”

TreadRight Foundation programme director Shannon Guihan added: “As an organisation and with the support of the TTC family of brands, we are working to make travel matter.

“The Iraq al-Amir Women’s Co-operative is a perfect example of the kind of initiative that can harness the power of travel and tourism and use it to make real, sustainable, positive changes in people’s lives.

“It was a privilege to be so warmly welcomed at the co-operative and to hear the women’s incredible and powerful stories of lives transformed for the better through Iraq al-Amir; now TTC has the honour of introducing our audiences to the stories of these remarkable women through our new video, and by taking guests to visit the co-operative in Jordan.”