Ataa Association begins picking olives
Ataa Association for Humanitarian Relief started the olive harvest in early October 2020 and continues until the end of this year in the villages surrounding the city of Salqin in northern Syria, and more than 3 thousand families will benefit from the project.
According to its official, Mr. Safwan al-Hayek, the olive harvest campaign aims to support the stability of the displaced and the people of the region by saving the costs of harvest and selling the crop as fruits, and providing temporary job opportunities for the displaced during the olive harvest season.
In addition to these services, Ataa Association team, during the project, provides manual harvest supplies and manpower which is a cornerstone of olive harvest. Also, they hold awareness sessions for workers before the harvest season in order to avoid any physical damage to the trees due to lack of experience in olive harvest.
Mr. Al-Hayek pointed to the importance of the blessed olive tree, as it is a constant source of income for farmers in northern Syria as well as for the displaced through their work in olive farms, which will help the population improve their food security especially since the nutritional value of olive oil is considered high. Ataa Association provides financial vouchers to support the olive press after the harvest and supports its marketing and sale through buying the bottles of oil from each farmer at a subsidized price and presenting them to needy families within the Association’s other projects.
Mr. Al-Hayek added that there are difficulties and challenges facing olive harvest, such as the high labor prices due to the fluctuation of oil prices, the delay in the rain season, which is an important factor to facilitate the harvest, in addition to the instability of the security situation and the spread of the Corona virus which negatively affects the olive harvest.
The olive tree is one of the most important essential resources that people depend on in light of the difficult living conditions in which they live.
Mr. Al-Hayek noted that women play a major role in the development of olive cultivation, as they have proven their ability to work side by side with men, since many families have lost their breadwinners due to the war conditions which made the burden of spending fall on the shoulders of women in order to secure the necessities of life.
It is noteworthy that Ataa Association for Humanitarian Relief pays special attention to the agricultural sector since its establishment, and has launched many projects that targeted the displaced people and their hosts inside Syria.