Jordanian, from Jordan; seeking Professional Post Graduate degree in Fine Arts and is enrolled at University of Gothenburg.
I'm Raghad, a woman driven by perseverance that has led me to where I am today. I grew up in the marginalized areas of East Amman. As a child, I questioned the roles that have been imposed on me. Once, I dreamed about studying fine arts. I was hoping my community and family would accept the person I wanted to be. Instead I was told that my vision was a breach of the religious and cultural perceptions of women in my community. Art for them was a liberating force that opens minds. Although Ruwwad Al- Tanmiya offered me a scholarship to study fine arts, my family embargoed this choice. At the time, I obeyed, and had to accept to study English literature which would at least guarantee me a college degree.
I pursued my dream secretly. I learned arts through research and joining free art workshops offered by local and international NGO' s like Ruwwad, Sounds of Change, Seenaryo, and Micro Galleries.
I curated and coordinated art workshops for children and women like "She' s Earth Theater Performance 2022 with Ruwwad Al Tanmeya," and " Polluted Rainbow 2019 with Micro Galleries."
I eventually landed a tuition scholarship to pursue a master's degree in fine arts at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. I want to investigate the artist's role in society and public space theories to use the arts as a powerful tool for social change. My proven ability to improve the lives of women and children in my community won me the support of many NGO' s. I was able to secure the necessary funding for my first year in collage, and I found myself seeking your support to cover my second and final year living expenses.
Why Would Donors Fund You?
I met many women who faced the same challenges I did and who probably did not have the means that I had. Investing in me will pave the way for me and for other women to bring the art scene to marginalized areas of East Amman and use art as a tool to bring about real change in cultural attitudes restricting women's life choices.
I had the stamina and the determination to find my voice and act upon it, and I want this to be available to more women in society.
How Do You Plan to Payback?
I focus my research on the way contemporary culture constrains the individual's experiences in the marginalized neighborhoods of Amman.
I plan to use the knowledge I gained from this research to launch a project where I transform the alleys and the rooftops of East Amman into galleries of artworks produced with children and women from those areas which express their life stories. By introducing and visualizing change, I hope to replace outdated perceptions with favorable visions that allow women to break the barriers that prevent them from realizing their potential.
Volunteer Work/Social Capital
- I was the Cultural Leader for Jordan's "Projection Art Festival Project" with Micro Galleries, and I created the art work "Out Loud Conversation," staged on the rooftops of East Amman in 2020.
- I volunteered as a facilitator at Ruwwad Al Tanmeya's Children Creative Arts Program for four years. I designed and supervised art activities that help children authentically and freely express their thoughts, and feelings, and raise awareness about social issues such as gender equality.
- I co-directed a play about children dropout rates commissioned by the ILO in 2021.
What Have You Done to Improve Yourself? Awards and Achievements
- As part of my research, I initiated a conceptual remote art project called " Whispering Attempt No 5, 2022" on the rooftops of Mohammad Ameen Refugee Camp in Amman. The work is carried out with the participation of women from the area, and it challenges the cultural constraints on women's experiences in public spaces.
- I received Axel Adler Scholarship 2022 which covers my master’s degree tuition fees
- I worked as the Creative Arts Coordinator in the Child Program at Ruwwad Al Tanmya, where I encouraged children to express themselves creatively.
- I worked as a director with Seenaryo, where I was helping refugee children to bring to enjoy creating stories.