PH International

Media Education and Democracy in Action

Country: Jordan
Category: Community Development Programs


The Media Education and Democracy in Action (MEDIA) Youth Leadership Exchange Program provided 21 young people and two chaperones from Vermont, USA, Jordan and Palestinian refugee camps in Jordan with media education, technology and leadership training during two-way exchanges and through monitored online work.  Project Harmony (PH) welcomed the participation and support of partnership with the United Palestinian Appeal of Washington, DC for this project. Through an interactive weblog along with training sessions and workshops in VT and Jordan, students increased their knowledge and understanding of media literacy concepts and tools;  they were able to apply learned media literacy skills by creating collaborative digital stories; all participants gained a deeper understanding of the relationships between media, culture, government and civil society through meetings and pertinent site visits during both US and Jordanian exchanges and very importantly, were able to culturally immerse and learn from one another through host family stays, cultural events and collaborative project work.


The core technical element of the MEDIA program was the completion of a digital story about a specific social issue of concern in the students’ home country.  This vehicle was selected because it allows for the acquisition of a wide array of technical skills, encourages sustained community involvement as students become personally invested in their chosen topic, and is effective in eliciting a sympathetic response in the students’ identified audience. Digital stories addressed issues such as domestic violence, stereotypes, youth and media, global poverty, and youth activism through a program weblog, classroom and computer lab work and cultural immersion by staying with host families in Vermont and Jordan.