Married with four children aged between 16 and 25, Sanaa originally from Damascus worries like any other mother when talking about the future of her children.
“We had a spoiled life in Syria, but because of everything that has happened the children were forced to grow up quickly. My youngest was only 10 years old when we left and I remember when he first started school in Jordan, he used to insist to walk to school to save the money which would have otherwise been used on transportation.”
Now, however, eight years after they first arrived in Jordan, a new set of challenges have arisen. As although primary and secondary school education is free for Syrian refugees in Jordan, higher education is expensive and university scholarships limited. Sanaa explains how her children have increasingly become frustrated, “they have big dreams but no means to achieve them.”
A ,mathematics and computer science teacher back in Syria, Sanaa knows the importance of education and although in Jordan she hasn’t been able to work as a teacher due to limitations on the sectors refugees can work in, she has nonetheless tried to keep passing on her knowledge both as a private tutor for the children of friends and family and through her work as a community volunteer at Nuzha Community Centre in East Amman.
“As a teacher, I always saw results immediately, that is what I thrive off, which is why the work here is so rewarding because the impact is clear.”
Leading the computer classes for women at the center, Sanaa is clearly passionate about enabling refugees to be able to build a better future. “Education opens up possibilities. No matter what age you are.”