Youth of Learning Clubs Unleash Their Digital Prowess

Youth masters digital interactive initiative to engage youth and drive positive change within communities

USAID YouthPower deploys innovative and multilayered capacity building approaches that empower youth to act as engaged citizens and productive members of society with the agency to advocate for themselves, and to shape services designed to better prepare them to enter higher education, vocational training and the workforce.

IRBEHAT
Mohammad Irbehat, 27 years. Editor and voiceover recordist - founding member of the Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show.

Earlier this year, in part to reduce missed opportunities of engaging youth beause of the coronavirus, USAID YouthPower introduced The Learning Clubs, informal community-based safe spaces for youth who are passionate about a particular area to come together and expand their learning and practices related to that shared topic of interest. It was through the Learning Clubs, namely the Filmmaking and New Media Learning Club and the Gender Inclusion Learning Club, that the spark of Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show first ignited. The show is designed to be a digital learning education initiative.

Mohammad Irbehat, 27, works in Tafilah as a positive change catalyst and an active youth member of USAID YouthPower various activities. He is also a member of the Gender Inclusion and Filmmaking and New Media Learning clubs. He has a self-nurtured skill of editing videos and has participated in the 16-Day Campaign Against Gender-Based Violence. “Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show is the collaborative brainchild of Ala’a, Abdelmalek and myself; we wanted to be active and remain intact during the COVID-19 crisis, and here we are,”Mohammad says.

kreshan
Ala’a Kreshan, 27 years. Writer and scenarist - founding member of the Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show.

Ala’a Kreshan, 27, is from Amman and is the mastermind behind scripting the riddles and connecting them to a larger field of view. The riddles ultimately serve as a social commentary on various important topics, such as heritage, traditions, gender and social issues. Ala’a adds: “Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show is our own manifestation and take on the USAID YouthPower program.The characters Shbaib and his sister Kouwa; which is the Arabic word for power, echo the gender and social inclusion movement we are rooting for. Shbaib is a male youth with physical disabilities, yet this doesn’t stop him from being a videographer. Shbaibs’ sister is literally the female power, who is always empowering the whole family while also following her passion which is drawing.”

Abdelmalek Alzubi, the third piece of this puzzle, is an animation sensation in the making. Abdelmalek is 26, from Syria and resides in Irbed. In addition to his major role in the making of the Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show, Abdelmalek has recently participated in knowledge transfer trainings for interactive digital maps, a youth-led activity that aims to empower youth with the capacity of allocating assets that can be elevated to better serve them in their communities.

Since its launching back in April, the riddle show has managed to achieve a staggering engagement of more than 15,000 organic impressions and interactions. It has shed light and engaged youth in open communication dialogues on various topics such as gender, social inclusion, psychosocial support, problem solving, critical thinking, tolerance and successful collaboration.

“While working on the show, my knowledge and experience increased exponentially and not only in the technical aspects, I have learned valuable lessons in networking, packaging and working as a team member, This has refined my skills and is taking me to the next level.” Abdelmalek Alzubi.

Abdelmalek
Abdelmalek Alzubi, 26 years. Character designer and animator - founding member of the Abu Shbaib Family Riddles Show.

Abdelmalek adds: “For me personally, it’s much more than the effect the show had left on others, or how it engaged them. Because it has empowered me as well, I believe that Abu Shabib Family Riddles Show have left its imprint on all of us as well. I can’t stop thinking of the countless new opportunities and horizons this great collaboration has provided for me.”

The trio is making various plans to to build on the success of their show. They have emerged as ambitious entrepreneurs with extensive hands-on experience in project and product life cycles, digital engagement, quality control, production pipelines and most importantly, positive collaboration.

Through the nine unique and various YouthPower Learning Clubs, more youth will continue to collaborate and be empowered, and will eventually be capable of applying their skills and all learning acquired from the various USAID YouthPower learning and development activities to pursue their passions while engaging more youth along the way.

Region: Middle East, Jordan
Area of expertise: Youth