Since 2016, PeaceGeeks Jordan has created and grown the Meshkat Community, amplifying Arab voices for social inclusion in response to hate, violence, and polarization. Meshkat works to strengthen community cohesion by identifying and training local artists, digital content producers, innovators, women, and youth, as digital content creators, utilizing PeaceGeeks’ alternative narrative and transformative change methodology.
In 2021, through a grant from the Fund for Innovation and Transformation, we focused on understanding community conceptions of gender equality and creating content to advance gender equality from the community level.
Simultaneously, we launched the 18-month-long “Local Stories, Local Voices, Local Action” project, funded by theUS State Department, which builds on the Meshkat program’s foundation that established the Digital Youth network (DYN) in Jordan. The new project engaged youth across three governorates to transform narratives of marginalization, cyber bullying, disempowerment and division in order to nurture agency, ownership, and positive community action on the most important issues facing them. By generating youth agency and powerful, positive engagement in online spaces, this project helped to increase community resilience to harmful messages, misinformation, marginalization and polarization.
Program participants created 57 locally-relevant pieces ofcontent that challenge discrimination against women and promote attitudes of gender equality:
31 short films
21 podcast episodes13 written pieces
16 pieces of visual art2 murals
These pieces of content reached over 918 000 users across online platforms in the Middle East North Africa region.
Since PeaceGeeks’ Jordan’s inception in 2016, more than400 pieces of content focusing on themes of tolerance, diversity and equality, challenging narratives of hate and polarization, have been created by Jordanian film, media and graphic artists through the Meshkat Community.
Due to the growing reputation and demand for their alternative narratives (AN) transformative change (TC)methodologies, the Jordanian PeaceGeeks team are now being sought as trainers, partners and consultants on digital content creation and youth engagement work acrossJordan and more widely in the region.