youth


My body aches for Gaza and in a good way. Last night I was one of the lucky few who went to the ARAMEX warehouse in Qastal to help with the donations campaign for Gaza. There were nearly a hundred volunteers working last night. We prepared packages of food for our brethren in Gaza.

What amazes me is how tirelessly everyone worked pitching in with a smile working as a team. Many of us came as strangers and we left as strangers, but throughout we worked as one family… a team. Helping each other, working together, knowing that at the end of this day we have helped many.

Last night when I spoke to organizers of the group we had unloaded between 12-15 truckloads of donations and packed upwards of 900 boxes of aid, and yet we were a handful of volunteers.

The warehouse is massive to say the least, it is full with donations ranging from medical supplies, food, hygiene products, clothing, blankets and tents and every other random item you can think of. Children, youth and adults, men and women were all there. No one is too young or too old to help. Everyone can make a difference. There is so much work to do that I am calling out again to each and every one I know and don’t know.

If you have to go to the gym, this is defiantly a work out. If you want meet friends, then bring them here for an hour or two. If you have a family engagement then ask them to donate too. That argileh can wait, that meal, that coffee wont miss you as much as the children will miss warmth, and food.

Each one of us makes choices everyday on what to do, where to go, what to eat… we are privileged. Use that privilege; make that choice come help us sort out donations today, tomorrow, and everyday until we are done. Does Palestine, does Gaza not deserve two or three hours of your time? Come and let your body ache too and in a good way!

For more information go to 7iber.com where you can see pictures, videos and get directions of all the good work we are doing.

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I’ve recently visited a couple of malls and more than one coffee chain, these are things I rarely do. On these visits I noticed that the staff manning most of the stores and cafes were Jordanians. This may be one of the few redeeming qualities these places have. The creation of all these jobs and the fact that the “lazy” Jordanian is filling them is heartwarming.

Seeing  our youth working at these blue collar jobs is heartening. I guess gone are the days  when rigid parents and spoilt children refused the concept of labor in service, retail and hospitality industries. This is a small but good step forward in building the  character of our youth, now becoming the majority of our population, and tomorrow’s leaders.

What’s interesting to note is that in Thursday’s (Feb 7) Jordan Times the lead story on the front page was about unemployment. We still boast a very high rate: 13.1%, however, it is down from 14% last year. A major step in the last six years according to the article. Now I am no economist but with the growing population rate and the number of employable people, what that means to me is that there were enough job opportunities created that exceeded the rate of growth  for job seekers. How much of this is related to the boom in malls and global chains? I don’t know. I just hope we can continue to create more employment opportunities in all sectors, and in white collar as well as blue collar jobs. Perhaps this will help boost our economy and our people before they both collapse under the pressure of rising prices and inflation.