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Events of Interest The Re-Opening of the Islamic Wing at the MET: After 8 years of renovation and expansion, the Islamic Wing at the MET now offers fifteen galleries of Islamic art ranging from Spain to South Asia between he seventh and twentieth century.

It is the new year and a time for new beginnings at Friends of Jordan. In this edition of Marhabtain we will introduce you to the newly elected Friends of Jordan Officers. The winners of the first annual FOJ Photo Contest will be highlighted and you will learn how you can support current volunteers living in Jordan through the Adopt-a-Project fundraiser. Happy late winter from the Friends of Jordan team!

Announcement To better serve the Friends of Jordan community, we will no longer be using BigTent to record new member information or for processing membership renewals. To become a member, or to renew your membership, please use the pay pal link provided on the website.

In This Edition: FOJ Officers


Contest Winners

Meet your newly elected FOJ Officials.

Learn about PCV projects and how you can support their work.

See the winning entries from our PCV Photo Contest.

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Meet Your FOJ Officials for 2012 Rachel Cleary President My name is Rachel Cleary, and I am thrilled to return to Friends of Jordan as the President. I was a J-11 Special Education Volunteer placed near Karak in the village of Al-Khaldieh. I am currently finishing up my Masters in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) in Monterey, CA. My passions include taking spontaneous road trips, going wine tasting, and recruiting people to Gloria has lived in the DC area most of her life, minus the times that wanderlust has taken over. Having pursued degrees in

Gloria Lee Vice- President

theatre and education, she hopes to use both in the future in some mysterious, TBD fashion. As she is trying to discover this, she aspires to become a master skydiver one day...preferably once she no longer owes the government a crazy amount of money for her aforementioned education. While her time in Jordan seems like thing of the distant past, she has yet to forget the deliciousness of village-made mansef. Gloria is thrilled about the coming year with Friends of Jordan.

Natasha Marwah Treasurer Natasha Marwah served in Jordan from '06'08 and is back for her second year as FOJ Tresurer. A volunteer in Southern Karak, Natasha was known for her slightly unhealthy consumption of twinkies in the schoolyard and her loyal fur ball companion, Jackbunny. She currently lives in Washington DC and can be regularly found in the forests and deserts of Jordan and Morocco, running towards baby goats and barbary apes. 2



Kevin Schott Program Coordinator This is Kevin’s third year with Friends of Jordan serving as the Program Coordinator. He was a TEFL volunteer serving from 2007-2009 in Hashmieh, Ajloun. After coming home he returned to his favorite city of Philadelphia and continued where he left off working in museum education He is current an exhibit content developer at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology and Archeology (where you can find the world’s second largest crystal ball and 3rd largest Sphinx). He is also on the faculty of the HomeSkooled Gallery (where he is known both for bartending and building multi-


Tighe Flannagan Webmaster Tighe will be the FOJ webmaster for going on his third term this year. As a J10, Tighe taught English at the boys' school in Al-Rajif and would spend his weekends in nearby Petra or climbing on things in Wadi Rum. He currently lives in D.C. and will finish his masters this spring in Arab Studies at Georgetown University. He hopes to snag a job in international development, focusing on the Middle East and North Africa. He also still gets in trouble for his Jordanian accent (the qaf-gah muskilah) during his fusha classes.

Susan Miller-Coulter Secretary Susan Miller-Coulter, J-10, secretary, has now been employed at HQ longer than she served in Jordan. You can still find her film, The Last Drop, cached on the Peace Corps website, but her most enduring accomplishment is her granddaughter, Lila Grace Al Shraideh, who lives with her parents in Holyoke MA. 3

Neal Christiansen Fundraising Coordinator Neal (J11) served as an English teacher in Hussainiat, near Jerash, from 2007-2009. He originally hails from the small town of Los Banos in Central California. Neal completed his MA from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies last Spring and started Cornell Law School in Fall 2011. Currently, he lives in Ithaca, NY and is engaged to fellow RPCV, Linsey Meldrim.



Stephanie Hubbell Membership Coordinator Hi! I’m Stephanie Hubbell and I’m the new Friends of Jordan Membership Chair. I am recently returned from my Peace Corps service (I was a J-13), after serving as a Special Education Volunteer in Mafraq. I am currently working as an Instructional Assistant in the Lucia Mar Unified School District (CA), using the skills I learned in Jordan to implement school-based autism programs, and am looking forward to beginning a graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology on the East Coast this coming fall. I am excited to be on the FOJ board and hope to bring some of my signature “Sparkle” to our membership efforts!

Linsey Meldrim Newsletter Editor




Photo Contest Winners The results of the First Annual FOJ PCV Photo Contest are in! With over 13 current PCV participating in the contest, we had many excellent photographs to choose from and wanted to thank everyone who participated.

First Place: Michelle Chan for Eid Kids and Thughrat Kevin

Second Place: Megan Worthington for Cabbage Man

Third Place: Elizabeth Dowell for Princess




Friends of Jordan is holding it’s first ever Adopt-A-Project fundraiser! Purchasing a small project in Jordan is a great way to directly support grass-root, community development. Each project application is carefully screened by Friends of Jordan reviewers for factors of sustainability, impact, and alignment to Peace Corps goals before being approved. Your sponsorship of these and other projects is essential to the long-term success of Friends of Jordan. We are halfway to our goal of funding 3 projects and need your help! Each description outlines the vision and goal of the Peace Corps volunteer’s project and the funding needed to accomplish his/her mission. Friends of Jordan accepts Adopt-A-Project donations via PayPal or check. Please see our website for more information ( or contact and if you have any questions. Thank you in advance for your generous support!

Candidate 1: The Very Hungry Caterpillar Summer Camp Students in Jordan rarely read for enjoyment or learn that reading in English is more than just reading the dialogue in their textbooks. I want to provide students in Jordan with an opportunity to learn about reading for enjoyment using a classic children’s book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Reading enrichment will target English skills such as vocabulary, the days of the week, the alphabet and so forth. Project funds will be used for art supplies and copies of the book and target 50 students. Requested amount: $100

Adopt-a-Project Statues : Fully Funded!

Candidate 2: Parents’ Workshop Over the past year my husband and I have conducted several camps and clubs at our site to teach Critical Thinking. We now hope to offer a related workshop for parents in hopes of teaching them how to support their children's academic development and education at home. We will be offering 6 hours of interactive training over three days and will teach the following topics including learning processes, basic brain function, educational games and activities and the importance of reading with children. Requested amount: $120

Adopt-A-Project Status: Open

Candidate 3: Special Education Curriculum and Activity Resource Guide After working in a Jordanian Special Education center for over 15 months, I have come to realize that there is a serious lack of curriculum activities and resources designed for children with special needs. Many of my center teachers have expressed an interest in expanding student goals and increasing opportunities for whole-group instruction and activities. Working with these teachers, I have come up with a system of resource books for my teachers to use that include 100 different activities, lesson-planning guidance and information on different disabilities. The few guides that have been translated into Arabic have been well received by the Center teachers, and I would like to translate all of the activity guides and lessons we have developed and bind them. Requested amount: $100

Adopt-A-Project Status: Half-funded!

Marhabtain Winter/Spring 2012  
Marhabtain Winter/Spring 2012  

In this edition of the Friends of Jordan newsletter, see the photo contest winners and meet the officers for 2012.