Behind A Piece of Jordan
Photo by Joe Baur of Without a Path
I’m Steph and I’m a Brummy Brit living in Wadi Musa/Petra. Along with my wonderfully supportive family and friends (on both sides of the world) I run A Piece of Jordan.
In 2005 my family and I made our way to Jordan, a holiday that in one way or another changed all our lives. For me, a chance encounter on a horse ride through Petra (and some would say love at first sight) meant that my fate was sealed. Anas and I married in 2006, and in that time we have lived in both Jordan and the UK. We made the move back to Wadi Musa/Petra in March 2013 with plans to settle and raise our family.
Since I first lived in Jordan I have wanted to feel I was a benefit to the community that had welcomed me with open arms and love from the moment I arrived. I also wanted so desperately for visitors to the area to see the part of life I now get to see – its is amazing how much someone can become and feel part of a family just by entering into a home and sharing a meal. For me A Piece of Jordan is a way of opening up conversations, encouraging questions and allowing people to experience the community and culture.
With the unrest in the Middle East and the media coverage of the area, Jordan often gets painted with the same brush. A Piece of Jordan are working hard to show the real Jordan, the Jordan where people of all faiths live together, a Jordan that welcomes visitors from all walks of life and ensures they feel at home. We are working hard to challenge the media stereotypes of the Middle East – one project at a time.
Basically A Piece of Jordan’s aim is to give visitors to Petra a cultural experience as well as historical. They know the ancient ruins of Petra are phenomenal. (Seriously, it’s like a U.S. national park-sized playground among the ruins of a large, ancient city.) But they also know that Jordanians are pretty phenomenal, too.
Joe Baur – Without a Path
For those visiting the area we offer the chance to experience Petra beyond the archaeological site through our Eco Experiences. A recent traveler told us “When you’re travelling in a country with significant linguistic and cultural differences, it can be all to easy to run around and “see all the sights” without ever having a chance to really connect with the people who live there. Having the opportunity to come into a family’s home and spend an extended evening chatting, cooking, playing with children, and getting to know one another was a priceless experience”. With its breathtaking beauty, unquestionable hospitality, rich history and culture, Jordan needs to be celebrated, for it tells the tales of people in a land often scarred by stories of its neighbours. If a holiday in Jordan is not already on your bucket list, we hope it will be soon. Come create your unique Jordanian story, explore Jordan, meet the people and engage in cross cultural exchange, the sharing of knowledge and make friendships that will help create a more understanding and loving world.
You can see reviews of our Eco Experiences here: Trip Advisor
Petra is full of talented, creative individuals and organisations, as well as a long history of beautiful handicraft designs and skills. Despite this we have found that many souvenir shops make the choice to fill their stores with imported goods. Not only does this mean visitors are leaving with souvenirs that have very little link to Jordan but also traditional skills and the desire to work in the art field are vanishing.
We are working with both individuals and cooperatives to change this, to increase employment opportunities, inspire creativity and encourage visitors to support the local community. Check out our shop for some of the wonderful Jordanian inspired products we are working on. As well as using Jordanian inspired fabrics we are also working to incorporate recycled materials into our work.
Please be sure to stop and check out more beautiful products when you are in Petra!
It has always been important that all our work directly benefits the community. The projects and plans are ever changing and expanding but include dreams of Petra’s first Women and Children’s Centre, a childen’s book series educating young visitors about the region and much more! Check out our community projects for more details – to stay really up to date follow us on Facebook
We look forward to welcoming you to our beautiful land….Check out our blog for more about Jordan