Jordan | Nashatati
Partners: UNICEF, Ministry of Education (MoE), Ministry of Youth (MoY)
GFP vehicle: Sports For Peace, Art For Peace
Years: 2017 – 2021
The Nashatati Programme is based on a shared vision between Generations for Peace (GFP), UNICEF, the Jordanian Ministry of Education (MoE), and the Jordanian Ministry of Youth (MoY). Launched to increase access to sport and arts activities for vulnerable children (grades one to 10) at public schools across Jordan, the Programme fostered the development of life skills and encouraged active lifestyles among the youth, to enhance tolerance, acceptance, and social cohesion in their communities. It also focused on reducing systemic levels of violence in schools, to increase the inclusion of Syrian refugee students and students with disabilities. In the final year of its implementation, the Programme targeted a total 15,000 students.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, GFP successfully changed the in-person modality of the Programme to online, following the COVID-19 measures addressed by the MoE. GFP is proud to have successfully transitioned the Programme activities online, securing the sustainable transfer of knowledge at a national level despite the setbacks of the pandemic. The Programme and its partnerships are a model example for other countries, especially in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
The Target Group showed a 39% increase in their communication skills amongst each other.
This was measured based on TG members expressing their improvement in communication skills amongst each other.
The Target Group showed a 35% increase in their ability to solve problems in their daily lives.
This was measured based on TG members expressing their ability in solving problems better.
The Target Group showed a 43% increase in tolerance and improved interpersonal acceptance.
This was measured based on TG members expressing improvement in their interpersonal skills and increase in acceptance amongst each other.
I would be lost without the Nashatati Programme. If it wasn’t for this safe environment I would have been on a much different path – one that is much worse. My favourite part was learning new skills such as writing, photography, and video editing. We loved that the Programme gave us the opportunity to act and take on the personalities of singers and news anchors. I never expected to feel so confident and to try new things!
The Nashatati training sessions provided us with information about how to lead and develop safe, effective, and engaging sport and arts activities that encourage intercultural exchange and integration of people with disabilities without discrimination. We learnt how to overcome the obstacles we might face and how to monitor our progress as teachers. We used the Programme guidebook to enhance our theoretical knowledge about very important concepts.
The Programme captured our interest and had a positive impact on teachers and students who developed important life skills through its activities. We learnt about acceptance, critical thinking, and social responsibility. My personal view changed because of the Programme. Some activities that I thought were only suitable for males, I now know can be enjoyed by everyone. Now I can transfer my knowledge and the skills I learnt through Nashatati to my colleagues and friends.
A story of change
Overcoming the Unthinkable: Mujahid’s Story
Mujahid Al-Sheikh, a Finance and Computer Technology teacher, prides himself on never missing an opportunity to make his school and community a better place. He enjoys volunteering for extracurricular activities, and when he heard about Nashatati (My Skills), a Programme that was set to begin at his school, he immediately looked for a way to get involved.
At the beginning of the Programme, Mujahid enjoyed interacting with his students and creating safe spaces and environments for them to engage with one another through activities that foster life skills, development, active lifestyle, tolerance, acceptance, and social cohesion. “At every session there seemed to be new students taking part, because participants shared their positive experiences with their peers and encouraged them to join. The Programme quickly reached its full capacity just days after it launched,” Mujahid explains.
The Programme was in full swing when, in 2019, the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic interrupted daily life in Jordan and around the world. “I was looking forward to another year of Nashatati when suddenly, life as we knew it disappeared before our eyes. The COVID-19 pandemic brought lockdowns, physical distancing measures, curfews, and a lot of uncertainty and anxiety. I knew this was the most important time for me to be with my students, to support them, but I couldn’t physically reach them,” recalls Mujahid.
Luckily, the Nashatati implementation team had already begun exploring ways to digitalise the Programme in order to continue its implementation online. When Muhajid heard about these steps, he felt encouraged to explore the ways he could create meaningful interactions to support online activities.
“I explored different tools to use for the Nashatati online sessions. I found a way to play the games online, through Zoom,” shares Muhajid. The Programme’s successful online transition became evident in the students’ enthusiasm. “One student, who joined the Programme late, was told by fellow participants about the games they played online. He said that if he had known how much fun it would be, he would have joined the Programme earlier,” Muhajid reflects.
Muhajid continued to see his students’ growing interest and increased engagement in the online sessions as the Programme continued. “Despite the programme moving online, I saw results similar to the previous year; many students had more self-confidence, they were more willing to take the lead, and were more comfortable with change. But what was really special is that I noticed these results in myself and my fellow teachers as well. We all needed this Programme, especially during the pandemic,” he shares.
As Muhajid reflects on the time passed since the pandemic, he expresses his gratitude to have participated in the Nashatati Programme at such a crucial time. He hopes others will realise the importance of community and maintaining a positive attitude to overcome adversity. He concludes, “Attitude is everything! Keep your attitude positive and keep a support group close to you – no matter how small it may be. With these two simple things, you can overcome anything!”