Farid, 12, is a young boy belonging to the Dom community, one of the most marginalised and vulnerable groups in Jordan.
Farid is a bright child who loves going to school and who dreams of becoming a policeman when he grows up. He lives in a tent with his mother, Norah, and his siblings. Their life has been very hard since his father left them, especially in the winter: Norah’s oldest son, Khidr, is the one that provides for the family, but the younger children have also had to help out. “I used to collect iron but I stopped doing that because I’m ashamed,” explains Farid. “My legs hurt, my hands hurt. I had to fill big bags. I stopped working because I want to go to school.” Child labour and early marriage are amongst the biggest challenges to access to education for children.
School is good. It’s better than anything else. They teach us science, math, Arabic and English.
Norah wants a better life for her children. Farid and his siblings are attending lessons in Makani (“my place”, in Arabic) centres. As a parent, she truly believes education will change their lives for the better and give them the stability they need: “They study and make something of themselves. We don’t want them to play in the streets. I hope they succeed. We want a good life for them.” Says Farid’s mother.