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Funded by: U.S. Department of the Interior - International Technical Assistance Program (DOI-ITAP), Petra National Foundation (donation from Lester Fant & Ann Marie Kohlligian), Tourism Cares for Tomorrow (donation from Bob Whitley), The British Embassy in Amman (Bilateral Programme Budget), Cairo Amman Bank

Workshops Summary

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As part of its efforts to preserve and protect the site of Petra; PNT in 2010 launched its “Petra Junior Ranger Programme” to introduce an awareness programme on the preservation and protection of Petra and to instil a sense of identity and pride in the children and youth living in the Petra Region. To-date minimal interest in exploring and learning Petra’s history, significance and values has been expressed by the government authorities and local communities. Their interest has generally been focused more on the economic benefits of the site rather than identifying with their heritage and the values of the site.

Petra Jr. Ranger Programme is a 5 day camp that consists of series of hands-on interactive and innovative classroom activities designed to reinforce the local youth’s understanding of their relationship to their heritage and their commitment to preserving and protecting the archaeological, cultural, and natural heritage of Petra. Youth of different age groups divided between the ages of 7-9, 10-12 and 13-15 engage in various stimulating activities designed to increase awareness, identification with their heritage, and become involved in the preservation and conservation of Petra and responsible tourism. After completion of the programme the children receive a certificate of recognition and token of achievement for their completion of the Petra Junior Ranger Pilot Programme.

Each camp graduates 20 participants and trains 5 local volunteers to help facilitate and conduct the activities throughout the week. The programme includes classroom sessions followed by field trips to different sites so participants can relate what they learned to the actual site.

The curriculum was developed based on the values of Petra that were identified by UNESCO. It addresses the cultural, natural and economic values in a very structured way starting by explaining each value and what it adds to the site of Petra, what are the practices and habits that are damaging each value, and how to protect and preserve each value. Thus far, the curricula for the 7-9, 10-12 and 13-15 have been developed, piloted and implemented.  Throughout the programme local and international volunteers have and continue to play a very important role in developing all aspects of this programme.

The workshops will have significant impact in the local children/youths understanding of the significance of their heritage and need to protect its values. It broadens the scope of children/youth for future endeavours and encourages social entrepreneurship. Also, it will improve relations and interaction between local communities and PDTRA’s management and preservation efforts in Petra.

Empowering the local children to have impact by education and awareness will encourage them to explore, learn, and protect Petra. These children will be the future generations who will carryon the heritage conservation, preservation, and protection efforts. Investing in the local children will help ensure the sustainability in the conservation and preservation of Petra and its future values for generations.

Significant lessons for replication in other areas in Jordan, the region, and internationally can be drawn from the training workshop activities on the conservation and protection of Petra. PNT will conduct workshops in Amman in private schools.  Funds raised from these workshops will go towards funding workshops for government students both in Petra and in other region of Jordan

Education and awareness empowers children to have impact


See HRH Duchess of Cornwall's visit to Petra exhibition page.