The health, wellbeing, and education of the next generation of Jordanians are at the forefront of many of Queen Rania’s initiatives, whether it’s focusing on improving schools, protecting at-risk children and families, or providing young women with the skills to earn a living. Ahead of her 50th birthday on 31 August, we’re taking a look at five of the Jordanian queen’s charitable endeavours.
Royal Health Awareness Society
The Society is an initiative of Queen Rania’s, with the mission to “empower the Jordanian community to adopt a healthy lifestyle through raising health awareness and enhancing an environment conducive to safe and healthy behaviours.”
The Queen serves as chairperson of the board of trustees and oversees initiatives such as the Healthy Schools National Accreditation programme and Shababna youth volunteer programme.
The Queen Rania Foundation for Education and Development
The Queen Rania Foundation for Education and Development was established by Her Majesty in 2013 and “aims to improve opportunities for children and young people in Jordan and equip them with the knowledge, skills, strategies, and values that will allow them to excel in a fast-paced and competitive world.”
Its initiatives are mainly focused on improving educational outcomes in Jordan through early childhood care and development, innovation in learning, and teacher training. According to the foundation’s website, 3.5 million Arabic-speaking learners have signed up for the foundation’s ‘Edraak’ free online courses.
Jordan River Foundation
Chaired by Queen Rania, the Jordan River Foundation (JRF) was established in 1995 and focuses on child safety and community empowerment. Its mission is “to engage Jordanians to realise their full economic potential and overcome social challenges, especially child abuse.”
JRF implements various programmes to help Jordanian communities such as the 100 helplines for families and children, and the organisation also runs the Queen Rania Family and Child Center and the Queen Rania Al Abdullah Community Empowerment Center.
JRF also creates sustainable economic opportunities for local community women and female refugees, allowing them to earn an income through initiatives like the Al Karma Embroidery Center.
The Children’s Museum Jordan
“The Children’s Museum of Jordan is the realization of a personal dream of mine for Jordan’s children,” Queen Rania said in a letter on the museum’s website. “It is a place where they can come together, play, laugh, and make new friends. A place where imaginations are lit, ideas sparked, and connections made.”
The Children’s Museum Jordan is a non-profit educational institution launched by Queen Rania in 2007. Featuring more than 180 indoor and outdoor interactive exhibits, including an art studio, the Tinker Lab, the Secret Garden, a library and more, the museum also is focused on educational programmes and events.
Its goal “is to create an inclusive learning space that engages children from all over Jordan, from different socioeconomic backgrounds and learning abilities, and inspires them through a learning opportunity that lasts beyond the museum encounter and feeds into a richer and more active understanding of what it means to learn.”
With 140 partners from the public, private and civil society sectors, Madrasati (which means “my school” in Arabic) was launched in 2008 to improve the learning environments of Jordan’s most neglected public schools.
This initiative of Queen Rania looks at how the quality of learning environments have an impact on things like the health, safety, and academic performance of Jordanian students, and works to renovate in-need schools to improve outcomes.
This month, Madrasati announced it will be implementing Sesame Street’s Ahlan Simsim project in 10 schools, in partnership with the International Rescue Committee. The project gives students social and emotional learning opportunities through play-based activities featuring familiar characters such as Elmo and Cookie Monster.