New three-year initiative to empower citizens to use new technologies to participate in democratic processes and exercise their human rights
Amman, March 2018-Ruwwad Al-Tanmeya-a community-based organization that seeks solutions to marginalization through education, youth volunteerism and grassroots organizing-is teaming up with Canadian Equitas, a nonprofit that works on advancing equality, social justice and respect for human dignity worldwide, to launch a new three-year project titled, ‘Rawabet: Technological Bridges for Citizen Engagement’. Through this regional initiative, over 1,500 youth, women and persons with disabilities in Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco and Egypt will learn new technologies that will help them engage with their communities and participate more actively in social, economic and political life.
Building on Ruwwad’s long experience in the enablement of youth and children in Jordan and the Arab world, the initiative aims to bring together youth leaders who will train on online tools and action research to promote social and economic rights.
“This initiative is aligned with Ruwwad’s programmatic approach, which focuses on building youth’s skills and collective capacity through access to education, citizen engagement and grass roots organizing. It will enhance the skills and civic responsibility of 32 youth in East Amman, who will be launching neighborhood initiatives to mobilize 550 community members,” said Ruwwad Regional Director and Head of Programs, Samar Dudin.
In turn, Equitas Executive Director, Ian Hamilton, said, “The new initiative, Rawabet, stands for ‘Connections’, and this is what the initiative is creating today with youth in Jordan. At a time when voices of youth, women and other marginalized groups remain largely unheard, working with Ruwwad for the next three years will help remove barriers to meaningful participation and empower these groups, through technologies and connectivity, to be engaged.”
The partnership between Ruwwad and Equitas began in 2010 with the implementation of the educational toolkit, ‘Play It Fair!’, which aimed to help children better understand human rights values through games. Other projects have reinforced youth social responsibility and youth participation in children’s literacy programs in schools of East Amman, whereby more than 200 children have benefited from the activities led by youth. In 2016, the Joussour initiative strengthened the capacity of youth leaders from Ruwwad to engage with decision-makers and create opportunities to strengthen networks and build alliances.
The Rawabet initiative is funded by the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada. Other partners actively involved in the project are the Center for Victim of Torture-New Tactics Program, Association Marocaine Pour l’Éducation de la Jeunesse-Fes (AMEJ-Fes), Centre Tunisien Méditerranéen (TUMED) and Horus Foundation for Training and Development.
Ruwwad Al Tanmeya helps disenfranchised communities overcome marginalization through youth activism, civic engagement and education. Founded by Jordanian businessman Fadi Ghandour and a group of business entrepreneurs, Ruwwad Al Tanmeya is currently supported by Aramex, Cairo Amman Bank and Royana Association. Ruwwad Al Tanmeya establishes community empowerment centers in marginalized areas, in order to offer youth educational scholarships in return for community service across three programs: Children, youth and community. Over the years, Ruwwad Al Tanmeya’s operations have grown to encompass Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon and Egypt. http://ruwwad.net/