Queen Rania Visits Al Karak and Launches JRF's Comprehensive Development Initiative

July 23, 2012

(Office of Her Majesty, Press Department-Al Karak) Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah paid a visit to the Governorate of Al Karak today, where she marked the official commencement of projects under the Jordan River Foundation (JRF) Comprehensive Development Initiative. Her Majesty met with representatives of community based organizations (CBOs) that are taking part in the initiative and also visited Al Karak Children’s Club.

The initiative - which includes 28 development projects in various parts of Al Karak Governorate- is expected to provide more than 120 full-time and 100 part-time employment opportunities, directly and indirectly benefiting more the 5000 local community members.

At Al Karak Municipality, Her Majesty attended a meeting to officially launch JRF’s interventions in Karak. The meeting included a discussion with the participants, who elaborated on how their respective CBOs were selected as part of the 28 organizations to implement income generating projects in the initiative. JRF Deputy Director General, Eng. Ghaleb Qudah, gave a brief about the initiative, its goals and how JRF will be able to assist the different projects financially and through training and mentorship.

Following the presentations by participating CBOs, Her Majesty said: “I’m very proud of what I saw today, the creative projects, the inventive solutions and the entrepreneurial spirit, all working towards the betterment of the community.” These comprehensive development initiative projects “will go a long way to empower local organizations and to provide employment opportunities for the local community,” Said the Queen.

Her Majesty added that the best ideas for development challenges come from the involvement of the local community, who are the most aware of their issues and thus are the most capable of coming up with the best sustainable solutions for them.

Eng. Qudah said that JRF had announced the launch of the initiative in October 2011 in the presence of approximately 350 people, including heads of different directorates and community based organizations in the governorate of Karak. Applications where then distributed to CBOs interested in taking part in this initiative.

After 101 CBOs applied to be a part of the initiative, agreements were signed last week with the 28 CBOs that met the rigorous selection criteria. After training was provided and feasibility studies conducted, the societies have each signed agreements to receive a fund of JD10,000 to implement their respective projects.

At Al Karak Children’s Club, which is one of the 28 CBOs taking part in JRFs Comprehensive Development Initiative, Her Majesty met with the club’s board of directors and received a brief on its mandate and the services it offers to the children of the local community. Her Majesty toured the Club’s facilities including the computer lab and stopped by an ongoing “innovative thinking” session.

Her Majesty also met with youth groups who have benefited from the club, some of whom have participated in international conferences and competitions, including a recent youth talent conference in Dubai. The club has helped facilitate their participation, which according to the students has helped them boost their self confidence and provided them with a great exposure opportunity.

The club’s main programs include the student empowerment program in Karak, the youth empowerment program in the Middle East, the “Ma’an Project for a Better Future”, Al Farah Festival for children, the math club and various trainings and workshops.