The Role of Woman in Home Economy in Deraa Province

Saja Taha Al-Zoubi
General Commission for Scientific Agricultural Research-
Socio-Economic Research Administration
Faculty of Agriculture, Aleppo University,
2010

Abstract

Women in the Syrian rural areas, as in other places around the world, have a multifunctional role: confinement, production and social roles. Women constitute around half of the human resources in the rural areas in addition to their important role in creation their children’s characters which means development of youth resources. However, despite the great role of women in attaining family food security and their various agricultural contributions along the farming sequence starting from seeding to post-harvest, natural resource maintenance, food processing and animal care. Yet, all in all, is considered no more than household keeping. At the same time, women are neither likely to be aware of their socio-economic rights nor having enough access or control over natural resources; as women traditional roles have placed huge qualitative gaps related to the economy, education, decision making process, health and to access to services too.
Consequently, there is an actual need to investigate the role of women in home economy to motivate them to move to more essential productive positions and to empower their access to resources and services. As home economy is a specific science devoted to study all family characteristics in order to arrive at a better peaceful and secure family life as well as at a higher level of socio-economic life for rural households which need help or advice in all fields of household keeping and ensure understanding how to easily accomplish various activities such as time organization and management, cleaning and other housework, children care, nourishing and food processing and conservation, running household income and budget, and improve household livelihoods through many ways like handcrafts, livestock production in addition to benefit from all social services (motherhood and childhood centers, social and culture centers and extension units and environment protection centers). The difficulties women usually face due to their role marginalization in all domains of home economy is considered as one of the most important justifications of this research. Yet, the problem is not related to women only; its a central theme or in other words a basic social concern in the development process to be addressed, studied, and to come up with solutions.
Based on previous definition of the problem (ignore women role in home economy), the general purpose of this research has been specified by studying women participation and the main factors affecting this contribution in Rural Deraa province.
The main purpose of the research has been fulfilled by the following objectives:
(i) review of women role in the economic situation like: food processing (jam, pickled stuff, dairy products, etc.), handcrafts (weave and textile clothes and others), and agriculture (plant and animal parts).
(ii) present situation of women role in the educational field.
(iii) study of women role in health and the environmental fields.
(iv) study of women role in the social activities.
(v) role of women in home economy.
(vi) identification of economical and social factors affecting woman participation in the home economy in Rural Deraa province she’s participation in economic and social factors, educational factor, health & environment factor and her parts in home economy.
To fulfill such purpose, a suitable questionnaire has been designed and tested. Then the sample has been randomly fixed at (150 households), the data has been collected by interview-based questionnaire.
The data was collected during the first & second quarters of the year 2009. The following statistical analysis has been used: mathematical mean, range, percentage, correlation coefficient, multi-correlation. The significance of these quantifications has been tested statistically at the two levels 0.01 and 0.05.
The study includes home economic concepts, hindrance of the home economic in the opinion of some social norms. The study has also taken into consideration woman involvement in the fields of home economic (economic, education, social, health, environment, home management). The study also discusses the constraints to rural woman outdoor work, teaching her children, and participating in administration duties.
In the empirical and analytical context of women role, the research hypothesis and three research areas have been specified: the questionnaire, data digital transform then the research sample specified (independent variables, variables which have been analyzed descriptively then the dependable variables).
After that the results of the research have been reviewed and discussed as the study has shown the following results:
1.    There is a significant relationship between all independent variables, respondent age, educational level of respondent, and variables related to role of woman in the economic field at the level “0.01” has been proved. As well the moral relationship between the independent variable for number of respondent children at the moral level “0.05” while the moral relation with each of the following has not been proved, respondent job, respondent income, social status of respondent, being another wife, kind of respondent family.
2.    There is a significant relation between the independent variable of respondent, respondent age, educational level of respondent, number of respondent’s children, being another wife , respondent’s income and the woman role variable in the educational field at the level “0.01” has been proved, but the moral with the all following variables, respondent’s job, the social case, kind of respondent’s family has not been proved.
3.    There is a significant relation between the independent variable for the respondent, the respondent’s educational level, respondent’s income, number of respondent’s children, being another wife and the woman role variable in the health environment field at the level “0.01” has been proved. As well the moral relation between the independent variable for respondent’s job, at the moral level “0.05” while the moral relation with each of the following has not been proved, the social case, kind of respondent’s family  has not been proved.
4.    There is a significant relation between the independent variable for the respondent, another wife and the woman role variable in the social field at the level “0.05” has been proved, but the moral with the all following variables, respondent’s age, the respondent’s educational level, respondent’s income, respondent’s job, number of the respondent’s children, the social case, kind of respondent family, has not been proved.
5.    There is a significant relation between the independent variables for respondent, respondent’s income, being another wife and the woman role variable in the management field at the level “0.05” has been proved, but the moral with the all, following variables, respondent’s age, respondent’s educational level, respondent’s job  number of respondent’s children, the social case, kind of respondent family ,has not been proved.
6.    There is a significant relation between the independent variables for the respondent, respondent’s educational level, respondent’s income, being another wife and the woman role variable in home economic at the level “0.05” has been proved, but the relationship with each of the following variables, respondent’s age, respondent’s job, number of respondent children, the social case, kind of the family of the studied case is not significant.
The study has shown many constraints to hinder women participation in home management “according to the interviewed women” in rural Dara’a and these can be grouped as follows:
–    Constrains to females complete education “according to their opinion” are financial reasons, unwilling to complete education, early marriage.
–   Constrains to female’s outdoor work, they address many reasons: husband rejection, working outside affects looking after her children and family followed by the traditions dominate in rural areas.
–  Society refuses woman work considering that the work outside is men responsibility not women’s and going out of the house defects her; the traditions that consider the administration work is only for men due to male bias dominate in the society. Besides, the low level of the educational attainment of rural women which is, in their point of view, the main constraint to women work.
So, the study shows that the main cause preventing the respondents from participating in the management field that are, tradition, male- bias society, uncompleted education.