This report comes in the context of the project “Bridges of Understanding: Empowering Youth through Community Cohesion” in Al-Mafraq Governorate, which was implemented by Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (ARDD) in cooperation with the Fondation de France. The project’s activities, which lasted from April 1, 2018 to November 30, 2019 included (legal awareness sessions, psychological and social support sessions, conflict resolution skills building sessions, and dialogue sessions) to support Jordanian and Syrian young men and women between the ages of 16-25 years, to contribute effectively to the efforts towards achieving community cohesion in their communities.
The involvement of young men and women in the efforts to achieve social cohesion in Mafraq is at the core of ARDD’s work and its goals to ensure that everyone in Jordan should have the opportunity to have a role in solving the issues facing them in their societies. ARDD also believes that providing space to support the creation of positive relations between Syrian youth and host communities and providing them with the tools necessary to contribute effectively to their societies, is imperative to achieving peace, stability and recovery in the region now and in the future.
“Young people in Jordan constitute (70%) of the population, while children and young people under the age of 24 years constitute a cross section of a group, reaching (43.5%) of the total population, the endeavors of development in all fields will be more influential and changing if efforts targeted the largest segment and the most widespread, as investing in youth gives the state and society an immediate and future treatment that contributes to building a more coherent and strong building.“
The frustration of young people could lead to problems that we are not necessarily aware of, among them the isolation that impairs the active role of youth in citizenship and public responsibility. Young people in Jordan still suffer from difficulties in obtaining education and having the adequate job opportunities, which enhances the frustration of young men and women, and increases immigration rate and brain drain, especially with the high cost of higher education in public universities, the narrowing of spaces for expression and equal participation.
Social violence (in its various forms) is an obstacle to the vital participation of young people in public life, especially in conflict areas, As during conflicts, civil society and government institutions reduce their civic education programs in favor of humanitarian relief programs (such as health, education, and food) … etc.), which affects the participation of young people in public life, and their social, economic and political rights.