21 June 2011
A determined UNRWA schoolgirl has overcome the odds to achieve second place in a national athletic competition in Jordan.
Rukayya Shahadat, 15, has a difficult family background: her family live in tent in the Jordan Valley and she receives her pocket money from the school aid fund.
Nadeen Agha, Rukayya’s physical education teacher at Wadi Rayyan preparatory girls’ school, said: “Rukayya is a different person now. She was a troublemaker, but not any more. Even her educational achievement has improved a lot.”
UNRWA schoolchildren in Jordan continue to excel in the King Abdullah II Award for Physical Fitness, winning a total of 255 gold, 64 silver and 123 bronze medals this year.
The students ranked first and second were honoured by the King and Queen of Jordan in a special ceremony at Prince Hamzah Hall at Al Hussein Sports City on 31 May.
Rahaf Abul Naja from Khazma preparatory girls’ school came first at national level for the ten-year-olds category.
Her physical education teacher Dua’a Eleyyan said: “This is the second time for Rahaf. Last year she was ranked first for nine-year-olds. She was selected for her strong determination and excellent efforts. Her participation in the competition enhanced her spirit, improved her academic achievements and developed her communication skills.”
King Abdullah II Award for Physical Fitness project, established in 2005, is a school-based initiative targeting the younger generation that constitutes one-third of the population.
The Award encourages young people to become more physically active and lead healthier lifestyles.
The competition involved five fitness exercises: push-ups, sit-ups, a flexibility test, shuttle run and endurance run.
This year, more than 550,000 students from 2,438 schools from government, private, military and UNRWA schools participated in the competition.
By: Sabah Al-Azhari
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