Four years of isolation from the world can make anyone unable to face life again. But some choose to do the opposite.
After contracting a disease that limited her movement, Enas , 24, was isolated from her surroundings for four years. Enas endured the psychological trauma of isolation and physical pain from her treatment plan. She could not take the Tawjihi exams, move, or adapt to her new reality. These combined difficulties deprived the young woman, who was full of life, of living.
Enas struggled to accept this reality. She could not fulfil her desires or follow her passion for exploration, learning, and having new experiences. As much as it burdened her, her reluctance to accept it was the reason for Enas to get up again and fight, one step at a time.
Hope in Leadership
Enas lives with her family in Zarqa. Though vast, her hometown seemed to shrink after she was diagnosed. However, a window of hope appeared at Enas ’s local youth centre, where a Programme rekindled within her the flame of enthusiasm once again.
She reflects, “I wanted to make a change and escape this new reality, but I did not know how or where to start. In 2022, I registered at the Zarqa Youth Center I received a call from the head of the centre. I will never forget her words and constant support, “What do you think about participating in a new Programme?”
The Head of the centre offered Enas to participate in the ongoing sessions of the Leadership Programme, implemented in partnership between UNICEF Jordan, Generations For Peace (GFP), and the Jordanian Ministry of Youth. It aims to enable youth to build skills, confidence, and resilience to take on leadership roles in all segments of Jordanian society.
Throughout the sessions, Enas participated in various activities to build her capacities and gain leadership skills. “I learned to regulate my emotions, organise my time, manage my thoughts, and control myself. We learned to be responsible for ourselves and others,” she says.
Not only did she participate in group and individual activities, but she also led some sessions with support from facilitators. “I still remember the first time I stood before the participants and shared my opinion about the Johari window model for improving self-awareness. I was extremely nervous and shy, I forgot what I wanted to talk about. Ms Rania, the Head of the Centre, was standing behind me, reminding me of what I had intended to say and supporting me. I now have the ability and potential to stand before the audience and speak confidently,” Enas explains.
“If there is a sentence that reflects my state before and after the Leadership Programme, it is: I was alone in my own world, and today I hate loneliness,” Enas reflects. The Leadership Programme has boosted her morale, and helped her make new friends and become more communicative and closer to her family, which also positively impacted her health. “I now have a daily schedule in which my priorities are in order. I spend more time with my family, interact and engage with them, and I like to get out of the house,” she continues.
Through her participation in the Leadership Programme, Enas was able to distinguish and prove herself. She continues to volunteer in many activities organised by the Zarqa Youth Center.
Using facilitation tools and non-traditional individual and group learning exercises, the Leadership Programme was able to impact the lives of 900 youth across communities in Jordan, inspiring them to acquire the leadership skills necessary to achieve their ambitions and goals, while establishing the concepts of justice and gender equality.
Today, Enas aspires to take computer courses, develop herself, volunteer more, and benefit from the skills she has acquired from the Programme to benefit herself and leave an impact on others.
“Today, I am recovering, praise be to God, and one of the reasons for my recovery is the great support I received throughout the Programme. My message to every young woman or man around me is: Do not give up; set clear goals for yourself. Weakness and surrender will lead to losing your dreams,” she concludes.