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Iraqi refugees find comfort in the ancient art of mosaics


Symona - Shutterstock

J-P Mauro - published on 07/20/17

The Living Mosaic Project teaches those who have lost everything to create art

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The Living Mosaic project is working to help those displaced by war in the middle east. Located in Madaba, Jordan, 30km southwest of the capital city Amman, their goal is to teach refugees a craft which can make them a little money.

People who benefit from the project can make JD10 ($14.10) a day, but this is nothing compared to the opportunity they are given to focus on a craft, in a brief respite from their grief. For Nahid, who once held a job as a biology teacher, this simple craft has given her a renewed sense of professional value.

“We are busy now, we don’t think of our problems like before. We learn new abilities and develop new skills,” said Nihad.

Read more:
Why settling refugees in a timely manner is a pro-family action

The Living Mosaic project is part of a much larger effort to benefit refugees, funded by Caritas Jordan in cooperation with the French embassy.

Wael Suleiman, director of Caritas Jordan, recounted to The Jordan Times the projects that Caritas has in the works, all of which are geared toward giving refugees the skills for a bright future.

He said that among the many project Caritas provides for refugees are: livelihood training skills, carpentry and upcycling training, handcrafts (mosaic, sewing and embroidery, mud and clay, soap and wax making), as well as courses in cooking and catering. “Securing livelihood opportunities for Iraqi refugees in Jordan is one of the major objectives of Caritas, and we do this through providing skills training and by establishing a business incubator in Madaba Melkite Church, where many displaced Iraqis live,” Suleiman explained.

Mosaics are a type of art that creates an image through piecing together small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. The process is delicate and can be very time consuming for larger works.

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