I was shy and had few friends; today I am blessed with many friends within my community."
I was shy and had few friends; today I am blessed with many friends within my community."
I continuously talk to my peers and encourage them to enroll in the centers various programs and activities. At school, I stood out in my class as I became more confident and empowered; now I want my younger brothers to join the center so they get the same opportunity I did."
My experience with JRF changed me, I realize now that the prize is bigger than money; it is great friends and the feeling of pride every time I pass by a school or a street that we helped to change."
The beacon that guides the residents towards one goal for the benefit of all."
Both skills and experience that I acquired from the center made me feel that I have a message to share with other women; my work as an educator is just a small token to show my gratitude."
My parents, who opposed the idea at the beginning, recognize the new me and encouraged my twin brother to join."
I come from an area of small farmers who can barely sell their produce to the local market and with the suppressed prices during the high season, the farmers are content if they just break-even… a cold storage and a food processing unit was a dream for us but we never thought that it can become reality."
When Her Majesty’s visited us to share our experience, her words motivated us; I will never forget it when she said we rephrased the meaning of the word “Citizen” through our work."
I want to be popular like other girls in my class”, she complains “why is this happening to me?"
The smile we draw on the innocent faces of these young girls is the source of our strong-will and determination to continue and expand the work we have started", thank you JRF."
The Safe Room is a haven for distressed girls whom we have longed to assist for the past years," "in this space, students can speak freely and confidentially about their deepest pains and fears, seek guidance, and receive support."
JRF has transformed me into a Super Citizen"
I felt like a prisoner, today I accept my daughter’s illness, I know how to deal with her, before I used to deal with her illness instead.”"
I would have never imagined meeting Her Majesty one day, but when she visited Wadi Araba, I realized that we have achieved something to be proud of."
Inside us is a new feeling that we haven’t experienced before, the feeling of true citizenship and responsibility towards ourselves and our community”"
My dream is to start my own business one day soon."
Working with JRF, I discovered there are no limits to ambition. Working with youth, inspired me even more to develop myself personally so I enrolled in University; something I never thought was possible."
I would have had no future if it wasn’t for the program and the support of the Jordan River Foundation."
My work with JRF and in the complex enriched my experience and my university studies; it is truly the ultimate prize."
The desert of Wadi Araba became a green paradise producing only the best, and our community divided one day, is now working together under Qaa Al-Se’diyeen Association."
I feel empowered as I became one of two decision makers in my house. I now help my husband around the house, I learned how to drive and bought my first car after three years of work. My husband and I bought a land and a house and we are saving for the education of our three children."
We are in a much better place; our voices are heard by authorities after a long time of silence, we know how to deal with challenges and transform them into opportunities."
It was a daunting path towards an old and dark storage room, we never imagined that this same space could become a bright, safe and attractive room, it has actually become our favorite spot in the school."
My life has changed completely."
I was empowered by Jordan River Foundation’s training and worked hard to change, leading my father to change too”"
I felt so good after that call” said the counselor who spoke to Suha and her mother, “it is live proof that doing what we do can have a real impact on someone’s life. Suha is not alone in her struggle anymore, we made that happen"
I never thought that this experience will change me into a complete different person."
Through JRF's training programs, Madeline and I are able to identify cases of abuse in school, assist girls through creative and indirect methodologies such as writing and drawing and cooperate with the Family Protection Department in Aqaba when needed."
I lived my childhood in KSA, I had no idea what the word “volunteer” meant until I became one."
The training I received on Basic life Skills, Leadership Skills and volunteering have enriched my teen years and developed my personality."
Like many, I was occupied with the details of my own daily life. I walked in the neighborhood on a daily basis, it was impossible to avoid the scattered garbage or twisting my ankle when walking over a hidden hole; yet I did nothing, we did nothing to change. It was always easier to blame the authorities. All of this changed once we enrolled in the JRF’s program which taught us the spirit in working as a team."
I knew that this project can change my life... I met many people and have more self-confidence."
We were determined to find the space in our compounded school building, and with humble resources we agreed to renovate the old storage."
In University, am not Abu Sakher or the head of an association, am just a regular student and my daughter’s colleague."
“My father encourages me to continue my education after he witnessed my success; I am a changed woman. Today I am a real member in the family; participate in decision making equal to my brothers and full of belief that in order to make a change, you should change from within yourself first."
I had no idea Suha was going through such a hard time. I could see there was something wrong, but I didn’t know what to do about it. Thank you for helping us"
We are proud to declare that the Safe Room has assisted more than 60 girls since 2009 and was successful in returning ten dropouts to school again," "corporal punishment have dropped down significantly, and parents are showing more collaboration with our project."
I am so grateful for your help, I have talked to my mother about what I am experiencing and she has been very supportive since"
I liked to practice what I learned at home, and I had no idea that my brothers and sisters were learning too."
Wadi Araba Cluster: Barriers Can Expand Horizons: Aqaba Governorate
Cluster Villages: Ar-Risha, Gharandal and Bir-Madkor
Community Type: Rural Bedouin
Location. Wadi Araba is a desert area in the southern part of the Kingdom, north of Aqaba. The valley is 160 km long and 40 km wide, stretching over a total area of 2,085 km2.
Description. An arid area, Wadi Araba suffers from poverty, the lack of natural resources and a sparse vegetative cover. The cluster’s traditional Bedouin population consists of 2,130 inhabitants in 318 households.
Problems and Challenges Facing the Area:
Addressing the Local Needs of the Area
The Kaa’ Al-Saedine Co-operative is JRF’s community partner in the Wadi Araba cluster project. The Co-operative consists of 364 members (with membership increasing on a monthly basis) and with an-elected leadership. The project included capacity- building sessions with the Co-operative in team building and needs assessment, in addition to on-the-job training specifically in agricultural issues and Integrated Pest Management. A three-party agreement has been signed between the Co-operative, the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation and JRF (RCCDP) regarding the management of the project during implementation and long-term future management. Currently, there are nine permanent employees with the project, including an experienced Cluster Officer, and different daily laborers working on the farm.
One of the critical success stories of this cluster was the resolution of a 70-year land dispute in the Wadi Araba cluster between the government and local tribes. This dispute, in addition to internal divisions between the tribes in the area, was resolved through the skill and perseverance of project staff supported by the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation and local authorities.
The Wadi Araba Water Conservation Infrastructure Project: Abu-Barga Dam
The construction of Abu-Barga Dam was completed in May 2004. Currently, the dam stands at five meters high in both the upstream and downstream components, and is now secure when it rains. The contractor inserted cement around the body of the dam to fill all gaps and ensure that the dam will retain all water collected. The locals can now water their farms from the 250,000m3 rainwater harvesting dam, in addition to a small well that was renovated as part of the project. This initiative also created a number of new businesses, such as cement block production, and provided income and on-the-job training for Bedouins to learn modern agricultural skills.
Wadi Araba Integrated Livelihood Farm
The Integrated Livelihood Farm set up in Wadi Araba was completed in May 2004, covering a total area of 200 dunums. Ten single and three multi-span greenhouses are fully installed and planted with vegetables. The cluster farmers are currently selling cucumbers, peppers, cherry tomatoes, melons and other products, and 28 dunums of grapes and 30 dunums of citrus trees were also planted. A tractor, a refrigerated truck, fertilizers, chemicals, seeds and some packaging materials have also been purchased. The number of livestock on the farm reached 160 goats and 25 camels. In addition, a small veterinary clinic was established inside the farm to help the farmers improve the well-being of the livestock in the area. A hydroponic mechanical green fodder unit, a drip irrigation system and greenhouses will also maximize scarce water resources.
This project has also capitalized on the value that local Bedouins place on their camels, which were consuming considerable resources with little economic benefit. Through the production of milk and camel cheese, they are now able to increase revenues from this resource.