Project II: Information Centers for Syrian Youth in the North of Jordan
A Youth Information Center (YIC) is being established in a school in the Al Mafraq area (North of Jordan) under a regional Finland-funded project to benefit displaced Syrian youth, and young women in particular.
The YIC will include two computer labs and a library. For the latter, the school library will be upgraded, where the provision of books and educational resources, print and electronic, will be introduced.
The YIC will provide training on Internet use, the use of social media tools, the use of information technology for job search, and communication with others, including Jordanians within the community and Syrians elsewhere in Jordan. Over half of the nearly 2,000 pupils attending the school are displaced Syrians, and there are more girls than boys in attendance.
Currently, the bidding process for the electronic equipment and furniture has kicked off, and a soft opening is planned for March 2014 once the equipment has been installed. UNESCO will hold a training of trainers (TOT) workshop for all teachers at the school with the aim of introducing scientific research, online search for information, and internet literacy among other topics into the programme. In public Jordanian schools, where most displaced Syrian students are enrolled, such skills are almost nonexistent, even among the educators. The main launch event where the school students will take part in, will take place in summer 2014. The students will be provided with a brief about the project, its goals, and the concepts of freedom of expression and access to information for youth.
This activity contributes to the empowerment and social inclusion of youth by providing them with opportunities for learning, access to information and expressing themselves freely. The YIC will provide youth with a place to acquire skills through non-formal education.
Provided funding is available, UNESCO may duplicate the activity in the Zaatari refugee camp in northern Jordan by setting up another YIC in an existing UNESCO youth caravan. It is worth noting that a similar project is being implemented by the UNESCO office in Lebanon under the same fund.