A group of Westminster students had the chance to visit Jordan through the AlSadi Changing Lives Programme, providing them with life altering volunteer opportunities and an insight into Middle Eastern culture and learning.

From 11-21 September, Westminster students had the opportunity to visit Jordan, where they undertook volunteering projects, educational workshops and cultural tours of the country thanks to the AlSadi Changing Lives Programme.

This trip was made possible with the generous support of Dr Majid AlSadi, Chairman and CEO of Eastern Holding, a major philanthropist who promotes a commitment to humanitarian work, social justice and cross-cultural exchange.

Among the volunteering activities, Westminster students took part in a two-day activity with students from the Middle East University at the Wadi el-Deir al-Garbo School for Girls in Jerash, where they taught English and painted the grounds of the school.

In one of the most significant parts of the trip, students worked alongside volunteers from Basmitak Hata’llem, an organisation which supports young people living in the Gaza Palestinian Refugee Camp in Jerash, by providing them with education and training. Westminster students created a fundraising page and in about 10 days raised £943 for the camp. They also donated £350 in personal funds to buy gifts for the children. 

Students also had the opportunity to visit and work with young people at the Queen Rania Family and Child Centre which provides a variety of preventive and awareness-raising programs for children, youth, parents, and professionals as well as the BADWA centre for special education and the Princess Taghrid Institute who support local communities in developing and training orphans and struggling youth after the age of 16.

Towards the end of the trip, students joined alumni and friends for a reception at the British Ambassador’s Residence in Amman. Mr Edward Oakden CMG, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Jordan welcomed the group who had a chance to network with local graduates and staff.

Liberty Turner, one of the students who went to Jordan said: “I had one of the best experiences out here in Jordan. We went to a girls’ school in Jerash where we taught them English lessons. Many of the girls were so excited to see English people and learn some of our language. We were greeted with presents and letters. We also helped painting the school and turning it all into a colourful and nice environment for them.”

Professor Alex Hughes, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement) said: “At the University of Westminster, we are committed to providing our students with opportunities for international experience that help them to prepare for graduate employability. The insights, skills and experiences provided by the AlSadi Changing Lives Programme are invaluable learning tools for students poised to embrace professional life in a global context.”

Located in the heart of London, the University of Westminster is an international institution embracing global engagement in all its forms. We have students from 165 countries, staff from across the world and a highly international alumni community. This diversity is supported by a rich mix of international partnerships in over 20 countries worldwide, and places particular emphasis on providing international opportunities for our students. Our research addresses global themes and is sustained by international collaborations further enhancing our global community.

Find out more about the AlSadi Changing Lives Programme.

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