United Nations Relief & Works Agency (UNRWA)


UNRWA provide assistance and protection for some 5 million registered Palestine Refugees to help them achieve their full potential in human development.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN Member States. UNRWA also receives some funding from the Regular Budget of the United Nations, which is used mostly for international staffing costs.

The Agency’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance, including in times of armed conflict.

We are committed to fostering the human development of Palestine refugees by helping them to:

  • Acquire knowledge and skills
  • Lead long and healthy lives
  • Achieve decent standards of living
  • Enjoy human rights to the fullest possible extent.

UNRWA provides basic health, education and relief and social services to Palestine refugees to ensure that they:

  • Live improved and healthy lives
  • Develop knowledge and skills for livelihood
  • Achieve a decent standard of living
  • Enjoy their human rights to the fullest extent possible.

Read more on the four human development goals identified as the focus of UNRWA operations.

UNRWA works on promoting access to economic empowerment and access to employment opportunities among Palestine women refugees across its different fields of operation.

Examples of these noteworthy initiatives are presented as follows:

  • In Gaza, the Young Women Leaders Programme (YWLP) provides female university graduates with skills that better respond to the labour market needs. In 2016, 1147 women, as part of the Young Graduates Programme, participated in the 2.5 month training programme. Moreover, 1345 of young women graduates had the opportunity to turn theory into practice and accessed job placement opportunities in civil society and private sector. Of these, 400 took part in a 10-day work orientation scheme and 100 graduates were selected to manage 20 small scale projects aimed at improving their project management skills and community activism.
  • In Lebanon, a MOU Partnership with Women’s Programme Association (WPA) is formed for the rehabilitation of small business enterprises of Palestine Refugees women in the camps.
  • In the West Bank, the Cash for Work (CFW) programme continues to provide opportunities within Camp Service Offices (CSOs), localCommunity Based Organization (CBOs), schools, clinics, kindergartens, libraries and other local partners. With the aim to create new innovative job opportunities for CfW female beneficiaries and develop the CfW female beneficiaries’ skills and new experiences, the Cash-for Work programme carried out the “She can” competition. In the first half of 2016, out of 36 Expression of Interests submitted by local organizations across the West Bank Camps, 5 projects were selected to be awarded the value of approximately US$ 3000 – 5000 per project. Selected projects promise to create new innovative job opportunities for women residents of West Bank camps.
  • In Syria, within the emergency response plan, UNRWA continues to prioritize initiatives and promote women’s economic empowerment to improve their livelihoods.
  • In Jordan, Women Programme Centres organises sessions on capacity building to run small enterprises and access employment opportunities among women refugees (75 female participants in 2016).


UNRWA also works on promoting skill development initiatives among staff, such as in the case of Gaza field office where 23 staff in HR Department were engaged in sessions on leadership, coaching and mentoring, presentation skills, and gender. The Agency increasingly focuses attention on promoting women’s access to senior positions and has established monitoring mechanisms on the number of women in a senior position in each category of staff.

Read more about Palestine Refugees

We invite applications from experienced professionals interested in international or area posts in any one of the Agency’s five fields of operations – Syria, Lebanon, Gaza, Jordan and the West Bank. We offer fixed-term positions as well as consultancy opportunities for specific tasks and emergency relief efforts.

UNRWA seeks programme specialists in education, health, relief and recovery, infrastructure and protection as well as professionals with experience in administrative and operational support.

Name: Meg Audette

Role: West Bank Deputy Director of UNRWA Operations (Programmes)

What is your background? What did you do/study before working for your organisation?

I have an MA in Sustainable Development from the SIT Graduate Institute and worked for more than 8 years in the NGO sector before joining the UN.

What drove you to choose your current position?

I had worked for more than three years with UNRWA at a P4 level on strategic planning, monitoring, and evaluation.  I felt that I had learned enough to be able to contribute at a more senior level.

What single fact would surprise people the most about you?

I am a volunteer clown and have done clown shows in Latin America, Southeast Asia, the United States, and the Middle East.

What do you look for in candidates?

Strong technical skills, self-awareness, an ability to learn on the job, and a positive attitude.

What first attracted you to this organization?

I liked that UNRWA provides direct services, which is quite unique in the UN system.  In the West Bank, we provide basic education to almost 50,000 students per year.

What’s the best thing about working for the organization?

Being able to get out to the field and meet with the people we serve.

What are your proudest achievements with your organisation?

Contributing to improvements to how we strategically plan, strengthening our solid waste management programme, and working on the rollout of our transition from providing in-kind food parcels to cash support.

Nicest fact/surprise about your organization/employer?

Although we have over 30,000 staff, we only work in five fields of operation in the Middle East. This makes it very easy to discuss key issues with our headquarters and other fields.

What advice would you give other women interested in following in your footsteps?

Be prepared for people to challenge you, and to have to hold your ground. Believe in yourself, but stay humble.

Name: Ghada Yousef Al Jadba


Nationality: Palestinian

Role: Chief Field Health Programme, Gaza Field Office

What did you do/study before working for your organisation?

I have a Bachelor’s degree in medicine and surgery and a Master’s degree in Public Health.

What drove you to choose your current position?

Mainly because I believe in my leadership capacity, managerial and technical skills to manage the Health programme in Gaza, and I try to meet the increasing health needs of the Palestinian refugees in the deteriorating situation in Gaza.

What single fact would surprise people the most about you?

Being a woman with a strong personality and in the same time having a very positive attitude in dealing with all stakeholders.

What do you look for in candidates?

High professionalism.

What first attracted you to this organization?

The high level of transparency and the enhancement of gender equality.

What’s the best thing about working for the organization?

Serving people in need of meeting their needs.

What are your proudest achievements with your organisation?

Improving the quality of health care provided by UNRWA and implementing the health reform in all health centres, as well as achieving all of the targets of the performance indicators related to health programme, which now reflects a better quality of health care. Finally, the capacity building of the health staff in the Gaza field and enhancing positive culture among UNRWA Health Programme.

Nicest fact/surprise about your organization/employer?

The kindness of its staff is always a nice surprise and the will to continue achieving, despite the harsh challenges of the violent conflicts in Gaza.

What advice would you give other women interested in following in your footsteps?

To believe in herself (very important!), have clear goals and then to have the insistence to achieve them and never to give up despite all of the challenges.

Recruiters representing UNRWA will be available at our next event. Register here

Company Statistics

Date Established


Member States



Amman, Jordan