Ms. Abu Saad: Awareness is the First Step of Change
By: The Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (ARDD)
Jerash – Islam, from Jerash Governorate, north of Amman, is one of the participants in the training of trainers activities within the project: "Empowering Each Other: United for Change", a strategic partnership between the Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (ARDD) and UN Women Jordan, funded by the European Union, with the aim of providing young women and men with the knowledge and skills to become trained in civic engagement and social protection in their governorates, as well as adopting positive behaviors, raising awareness, and increasing participation among men and women alike.
As an active young woman in the public sphere and a volunteer in one of the organizations specialized in refugee affairs, which gave two trainings to residents of Jerash and Ajloun governorates, Islam notes that there is "a fear among the residents of the two governorates regarding participation and engagement in civic life, because of the norms and ideas imposed on people, which they inherited and have been influenced by to this day."
As a young woman who aspires to seeing more women's participation in decision-making, leadership, and expression, Abu Saad believes that difficult societal traditions and concepts are not easy to rectify, but also not impossible. Therefore, "the project ‘Empowering Each Other’ was a real opportunity for me and the participants in the training to reflect on concepts we did not think about before, such as justice, safety, participation, and positive communication with decision-makers."
On the importance of achieving justice in providing social protection for all, and the need to support women to pioneer and succeed in community campaigns and initiatives, Islam stresses that change in society is based on awareness, openness, knowledge, and more effective participation in society, which means that we need more training that would enable us and boost our capabilities, in addition to being wide-scaled, continuous, and periodical, as well as the cooperation of all government agencies, civil society, associations, and media to raise the awareness of individuals and bring about the desired change in society.
After a change that made a significant difference in the life of young Islam, through which she became an ambassador in her society as she was able to transfer knowledge, train other individuals, interact positively, and cooperate with them, there is still a need and an ambition to build and produce political and civic knowledge among men and women, and to have a broader outlook and horizon to bring about positive change in society, whether at the local or national level, which is achieved by providing individuals with various qualifying initiatives.
Read in Arabic.