The Duchess of Cornwall celebrated the power of women in Jordanian society as she cuddled a baby girl she described as “one of the women of the future”.
Camilla could not resist cradling four-week-old Sarah Abu Ammerah during the Women of the World Foundation (WoW) event in the capital Amman.
She told the guests: “There are so many inspirational ladies here doing so many things and they have done it by themselves. We’ve got the first lady plumber here, someone from the army, so many things.
“I think here would be the perfect place to start a WoW. I feel we could do a great job here.
“I have written down a speech but I seem to have gone off-piste a bit.”
Speaking in the Manara Arts and Culture Cafe, in the cultural district of the capital, she spoke about the nation’s queen: “I heard some wise words from Queen Rania.
“Her Majesty once said, ‘When a woman succeeds, she reaches out to those around her and pulls them up to her’. That is why, when you empower women, you empower a whole society.
“The collective experience of the women in this room proves the truth of those words.”
She added there was “serious reaching out and pulling up across our two countries”.
The baby’s mother, Dr Alaa Azzam, 42, a physics professor at the University of Jordan, said: “The duchess said to me, ‘Sarah will be one of the women of the future and that is very inspiring’.”
Camilla was presented with a picture of herself, framed with the words “Women Empowerer”.
She also received a quirky gift of a model man made from sink pipes, and a tap from a woman believed to be Jordan’s first female plumber, Khawla Al-Sheikh.
Camilla looked at it, smiled and said: “At least I know where to go now if I need a tap.”
Ms Al-Sheikh, 58, told the duchess she had been inspired to train as a plumber after fixing her mother’s leaky tap, and has now trained more than 500 women in the trade, many of whom have gone on to start up their own businesses.
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