The sun is shining on this mild day of February and excitement is in the air! The little school in Salt, Jordan, is in effervescence. Teachers are actively working for everything to be ready, while student’s happy shouts can be heard all over the playground.
Today concludes two weeks of end of cycle graduation ceremonies for the 3,124 students enrolled in the 20 schools of the UNICEF-MECI program.
Since October 2016, Syrian refugees and disadvantaged Jordanian children have benefited from education in Arabic, English and Math, psychosocial activities in arts, sports, and music, as well as awareness sessions on health, hygiene, education and child protection. Surrounded by dedicated supportive teachers and counselors, specifically trained to answer the needs of out-of-school and academically struggling students, these vulnerable children have evolved and are already demonstrating significant academic and behavioral progress.
The UNICEF-MECI program is also about creating bonds and building bridges between communities. Through social cohesion events, not only for parents of enrolled children, but also for all members of the neighborhood, different communities are given a chance to meet and exchange to open the dialogue and promote cooperation beyond origins.
These end of cycle graduation ceremonies were an opportunity for students to perform and demonstrate their skills in music, dance, sport, drama and English to an enthusiastic and cheerful audience of parents from both refugee and host communities. We were also honored by the presence of Ministry of Education representatives during these days of celebration.
Even though, they have just received their certificates, students are already excited to start the second semester!