Zakat Foundation of America’s Vocational Training Center in Jordan launched new courses in ICDL, web design, sewing, knitting, and accessories for sewing in January, bringing its ongoing course offerings for residents and refugees to 13 for 154 enrolled trainees.
“Our goal with vocational training is to do more than teach a set of skills. It is to put the lives of young people facing daunting challenges back in their hands,” says Loujain Ghalawinji, Zakat Foundation’s Jordan Office Program Coordinator.
The Mechanics of Renewed Spirits
Sure enough, marketable know-how is only one dimension of what Jordan’s trainees gain. The Center offers therapeutic benefit to some.
In the case of Eman, 21, a Syrian refugee suffering the psychological traumas of civil war, loss, and displacement, a new peer group of friends and close individualized mentoring from instructors like Rasha Jardat, the popular sewing teacher, aided her mental health recovery in ways physicians could not.
Eman came to the Center with an 8th grade education, her schooling cut short by war and her 9-member family’s flight to Jordan. With little income, her father is a retired soldier turned farmer, her refugee family had few options. In search of something to help her suffering daughter, Eman’s mother enrolled her in Zakat Foundation’s Vocational Training Center with blessed results.
Eman started with the knitting program and blossomed under Jardat’s loving guidance. She became proficient and proved talented in wool products creation.
She signed on for the esteemed ICDL course, or International Computer Drivers License, now the global standard for digital skills certification. In the attentive hands of Mrs. Anwar, Eman passed her certification exams while gaining more friends, confidence, and in-demand job skills.
Refugees like Eman have company in writing the Center’s growing tale of inspirational change. Irbid’s native Jordanians have stories of their own. Bayan, 23, came to the Center after completing a Bachelor’s of Science in psychology.
Struck with optic nerve atrophy, she went blind. Surgery only minimally restored her vision. She longed to enter the Center’s IT and sewing courses, but her sight limitations precluded that (for now). She decided to learn English (the Center offers four levels) and soared to the top of her class despite her functional blindness.
It Starts with You, Thank You
These remarkable stories of transformation begin with your compassionate, practical help. Your generous gifts bought the machines that tailored hope and renewed these young lives.
“The arrival of three new sewing machines gives us an opportunity to help a larger number of trainees and creates a more comfortable work atmosphere,” says Ghalawinji.
Sewing classes currently enroll 43 students, including the Accessories course, with 10 more trainees in the knitting program. Sewing and knitting sequences professionally qualify enrollees upon completion, enabling them to work independently or join existing businesses.
From learning English language to top-flight computer training, your donations help hundreds at Jordan’s Vocational Training Center.