Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah is a mother, a wife, a boss, an advocate, philanthropist and a humanitarian. She is NTF’s leading inspirational figure this December 2015. Her work and contributions in education, politics and her humanitarian work have impacted the quality of lives of millions. She once said, “I just wake up and feel like a regular person. At the end of the day you are living your life for the people that you represent. It’s an honour and a privilege to have that chance to make a difference – a qualitative difference in people’s lives – and it’s my responsibility to make the most out of that opportunity.”
For that reason, Queen Rania spends much of her time listening to and talking with the people of Jordan, to learn from them the best way to improve their livelihoods and Jordan’s prospects.
Queen Rania spearheads efforts in Jordan to adopt a holistic approach to national education, encouraging agencies and organizations to work on classroom quality, teaching standards, computer access, family involvement, community investment, and health awareness. Through initiatives, like Madrasati and the Teachers Academy, Queen Rania is helping Jordan’s children get the best start in life by repairing and revamping local schools, while inspiring teachers to be their best. She believes that the power of partnerships between the public, private, and non-profit sectors is a source of great potential for change in Jordan’s education system.
The Jordan River Foundation (JRF) is Queen Rania’s NGO that gives a helping hand to the disadvantaged in Jordan. For over ten years it has provided families with skills and knowledge to work themselves out of poverty. Today, it partners with the private sector and entire communities to bring resources, energy, and change to the lives of vulnerable citizens, empowering and inspiring them to believe they can make a difference for themselves and their loved ones. JRF is also recognized as a leader in the region for its achievements in protecting children. From rescuing abused children to healing whole families, JRF is now a centre of excellence, sharing its knowledge and know-how with others in and outside of the country.
Abroad, Queen Rania works for greater global action on access to quality education, and in her capacity as Eminent Advocate for UNICEF and Honorary Chairperson for UNGEI, she campaigns on behalf of children in need. She also participates in international gatherings, such as the Clinton Global Initiative and the World Economic Forum, of which she is a Board Member.
Her Majesty is married to King Abdullah II ibn Al Hussein of Jordan, they have 4 children: Prince Hussein, Princess Iman, Princess Salma, and Prince Hashem.
This December NTF wanted to feature a leader that has a clear vision to end poverty, increase education and the passion to make that dream a reality. Furthermore, as an Arab, Muslim woman, Queen Rania is committed to reconciling people of different faiths and cultures by encouraging cross-cultural dialogue, particularly amongst young people. This is an area that many leaders neglect to contribute. Queen Rania having experienced first hand understands the plight and struggles of being different. However, she exemplifies that is a positive and illustrates the proper etiquette that has built on integrity, ethics and selflessness. Queen Rania’s belief on education are cited in the following:
The opportunity to work. The opportunity to escape poverty. The opportunity to live healthily. The opportunity to live confidently. The opportunity to hope.
I believe you deserve an education.
Whoever you are.
It’s your right.
You deserve the chance to make the most of this brief glimpse we call existence. To be all you can be. To help those dear to you. To re-imagine the parameters of possibility.
Because education is transformative.
It can rescue a girl from the burdens of adulthood: early marriage and premature pregnancy.
It can empower a woman to take control of her life: mind, body, and soul.
It can defeat disease and temper intolerance: a shield for both our health and our humanity.
Education is a Titan.
Whole communities and countries lifted from the quicksands of destitution to the plains of progress.
And the power of education lies not in the pages of textbooks, or the recital of facts and figures.
It resides in the mind of a child who is taught how to think. How to learn. How to navigate the world, avoid whirlpools, climb mountains.
Education isn’t a line I’m spinning.
It’s a lifeline that’s saving.
Saving families. Saving futures.