We are proud to announce that the Middle East Children's Institute (MECI) received a grant from UNICEF Jordan in December 2013, to create and implement an education program for Syrian refugee children in Jordan, based on the MECI holistic education model. The program will also benefit Jordanian disadvantaged youth in the Al Balqaa Governate in Jordan. MECI Jordan is now established as a full and locally registered NGO with a permanent office in Amman.
REFUGEE CHILDREN IN JORDAN
Nearly 600,000 Syrian refugees are in Jordan today. The majority of the refugee children have had no schooling since the conflict began. The Al Balqaa Governorate in Jordan, which includes the city of Salt and the neighboring area known as Kamalyia, currently has over 16,000 refugees. Furthermore, Salt has pockets of extreme economic hardship where disadvantaged Jordanian youth struggle to stay in school. There is evidence of significant health and wellbeing issues. MECI is now operating its comprehensive program in 3 government schools.
HELPING SYRIAN AND JORDANIAN YOUTH
MECI is enrolling 1,000 children this year (700 Syrian refugees and 300 Jordanian children) who will attend after school and summer camp education programs to prepare them to enter and remain enrolled in Jordanian schools. Eligible students are between the ages of 6 and 12 and include boys and girls. Based upon its holistic model, MECI has created unique curricula for three levels of learning in four subjects: English, Math, Arabic, and Science. Each curriculum has been reviewed and approved by the Jordanian Ministry of Education. Counselors from a pool of applicants in Jordan were selected using MECI's strict criteria. All children registered for the program were individually tested to determine their scholastic, developmental and learning abilities, then placed in accordance with results. MECI also includes fine arts, music and sports to help children overcome the trauma they have experienced. MECI will also include community service for both groups of children working together to share a message of cooperation and stem the growing conflict between refugees and host country residents.
MECI OPENS PERMANENT OFFICE IN JORDAN
Country Director Lina Farouqi leads MECI Jordan. Lina brings 29 years of development and educational experience and is well known locally for her leadership at AMIDEAST and the Arab Academy. Staff members Mona Al Ameer and Nadeen Abu Rub have joined Lina in running MECI's programs in Jordan. MECI received approval to operate a locally registered NGO in December 2013, and now has a permanent office in Amman.