The Association for the Advancement of the Status of Women, Lakia, was founded in 1996 with the goal of improving the status of Bedouin women in their society and in Israeli society as a whole. The Association was the first women’s organization established in the Negev. It is run and operated by local Bedouin women who are sensitive to the needs and problems of their community and of women in particular. The Association, which operates in Lakia and the surrounding unrecognised villages, has been a major influence in the improvement of the status of women over the years.
Their major accomplishments have been to develop a thriving home-centred embroidery industry and to advocate for our community through the development of a cultural tourist centre, visited by many UK Israel Tours. The Association has raised the awareness of the community on many essential issues, including genetic diseases caused by kinship marriage, the importance of education for adults and both male and female children, pre-natal care, home economics, and more.
They have helped young women return to school to complete their studies and provided literacy classes for older women. They also held a series of workshops on breast cancer and raised awareness about the importance of early detection.