NEWS

July 28, 2020

SYRIAN REFUGEES AND JORDANIANS TURN ABANDONED PARKS
INTO SOCIAL HUBS

Improving green infrastructure through Cash for Work program: a story of income enhancement strategies, social cohesion, and climate change adaptation

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By Chiara Ceseracciu
AVSI Communication Officer in Jordan

There is a panoply of benefits that stem from adequate and accessible green infrastructure. It is undeniable that they are essential for the urban climate and biodiversity. They can also act as a catalyst for human wellbeing by creating income enhancement strategies and social cohesion.

Within the project “Improvement of Green Infrastructure in Jordan through Labour-Intensive Measures (Cash for Work),” funded by GIZ on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), AVSI Jordan is rehabilitating public green spaces in Aqaba and Zarqa Governorates. In Humayma (Aqaba Governorate), an abandoned park was turned into a social hub for the community.

The rehabilitation work was done with  the participation and support of semi-skilled and unskilled vulnerable people. Through a cash for work mechanism, AVSI provided short-term employment to Jordanians and Syrians, with the twofold aim to alleviate immediate financial pressure on individuals, as well as improve their future employment prospects through skills development. Ultimately, this approach paves the way for full-fledged development by enlarging the spectrum of livelihood opportunities available for people and allowing them to act as protagonists of their growth.

The Cash for Work project has also contributed to strengthening social cohesion by offering host and refugee communities the opportunity to work together towards a common goal.

AVSI participatory design approach and implementation process have given a sense of ownership and unity among host communities and refugees.

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