"I hope the children study and become better than us. I hope they succeed. We want a good life for them."
Farid is a bright child who loves going to school and who dreams of becoming a policeman when he grows up. Norah is Farid’s mother and her life in Jordan is very difficult: Khidr, her oldest son, is the one who provides for the family. “We are staying on the street. We live outside, it is very tough in the winter,” she explains, informing us the tent where they live in now is a summer tent.
Norah and her children belong to the Dom community and, until now, they have constantly been on the move. Thanks to the UNICEF-led Makani centre in their area, her family has access to a series of services that allow them to survive, from receiving washing products and clothes for the winter to free healthcare and education for the children. Farid is one of the best students in his class.
Makani centres reach out to vulnerable and disadvantaged children to provide informal education, psychosocial support and life-skills under one roof. The aim is to allow these children to then go back to formal education.
“They would go to traffic lights. They would sell stuff. Their life is difficult, we don’t want that. It’s not good. The school is better: it teaches them so they can become engineers, doctors or policemen. It’s better.”
Norah, who has been divorced for more than seven years and is the only one supporting her family wants her children to be able to study because she truly believes education will change their lives for the better. This is why she decided to settle in the Al Rajeeb Community in South East Amman: her children can attend the activities offered by the Makani centre and she can get the help she needs to give them some stability and a future.
Makani centres, run by UNICEF with the support of the EU Trust Fund, offer an umbrella of community-based services from child protection to early childhood development, while raising awareness on the importance of education for children with their parents. This project helps more than 280,000 Jordanian, Lebanese, Syrian and Turkish children, youth, women and teachers in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.