5 Ways To Get Moving In Jordan

BarakaBits, Uncategorized, Writing

Exercise has a great effect on our lives, from helping us positively de-stress to improving cardiovascular health. Here are some ideas to help you get moving in Jordan.

Adventure Jordan

Adventure Jordan offers a hike to Petra, named by National Geographic as one of the top 15 trails in the world. The Trek to Petra is 5-6 days long and offers the chance to hike in different terrains each day of the hike.

For more information: Visit Adventure Jordan’s website.

Bike Rush

Cycling is a great way to exercise; it builds strength and stamina and increases muscle tone. Bike Rush offers regular and customized rides to all destinations in Jordan, including Wadi Rum, Dabouq, Madaba and the Dead Sea. Bike Rush also offers family trips, training and the opportunity to rent a bike. So put your helmet on and start cycling!

For more information: Visit Bike Rush’s Facebook page and website.


Ever tried indoor climbing? Climbat Amman offers wall climbing routes of various difficulties. Courses, such as those in technique, how to belay, and introduction to Top-Rope  are also offered. A smaller wall also gives children the chance to try out this fun sport!

For more information: Visit Climbat Amman’s Facebook page and website

Fast Walk

If you’re looking for less adventure but still want to get moving, Fast Walk might be the answer you’re looking for. Fast Walk organizes walks in different areas around the city., so grab a friend and spend the evening discovering the city on foot and enjoying the weather.

For more information: Visit Fast Walk’s Facebook page.

One With Nature

One With Nature offers yoga, pilates and zumba, as well as water fitness. One With Nature also offers a program for kids to get them active as well. In addition to the regular classes offred, One With Nature organizes trips and workshops.

For more information: Visit One With Nature’s Facebook page and website

Know any other fun ways to get active in your city? Let us know in the comments below!

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 31/10/2015.

Jahanamiya: A Creative Writing Magazine By Saudi Women

BarakaBits, Uncategorized, Writing

Writing, as a means of self-expression, gives power.  In knowing the strength and power writing yields, Jahanamiya was created, encouraging Saudi women to raise their voices. Jahanamiya is a quarterly literary magazine that publishes creative writing by Saudi women.

The pieces featured in the magazine can be fiction, non-fiction or poetry; the magazine also features artwork by Saudi artists. Jahanamiya aims to use storytelling to explore Saudi culture through the eyes of Saudi women, to celebrate the diversity of both Saudi women and Saudi culture as well as to create a virtual community for Saudi female writers and readers. Each issue has a central theme that is an element of Saudi culture. Their first issue, which was released in the August 2015, was titled Arabic Coffee. It featured ten pieces in both English and Arabic. Each piece is accompanied by an artwork. Jahanamiya‘s second issue is set to be published around the end of December under the theme “Ismik”, meaning ‘your name’, referring to a female subject, in Arabic. Founder and Editor In Chief, Ahd Niazy told us, “I’m really excited about this theme because I think it will bring out much more personal stories. Saudi society, like many Arab societies, is a very private one. To be able learn from and about one other – and especially to learn from our women – is an absolute privilege.”

When asked about the importance of Jahanamiya, Ms. Ahd Niazy said, “Jahanamiya is important because every Saudi woman is important. Every marginalized woman, silenced woman, angry woman, successful woman, sad woman, elated is important. Listening to women and girls tell us about themselves – about their differences, their goals, and their stories – is vital. It’s vital to our growth as individuals, and to our success as a community.”

Interested in publishing your work on Jahanamiya? They are currently accepting submissions to their second issue, “Ismik“. You can send your submissions and questions to jahanamiya@gmail.com.

For more information: Visit Jahanamiya’s website and Facebook Page and you can follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 25/10/2015.

Abber Seikaly "Weaving a Home"

Abeer Seikaly’s “Weaving a Home”: Bringing the Comfort of Modern Life to the Displaced


Jordanian designer and architect, Abeer Seikaly, has come up with a solution for the hundreds of thousands of displaced people around the world. In her project, “Weaving a Home”, winner of the Lexus Design Award,  she has created structural fabric collapsible shelters.

The shelter absorbs solar energy that is converted into usable energy and the inside includes pockets that can be used for storage. In addition, the top can be used as a water storage tank, allowing for quick showers and a drainage system prevents flooding.

The structures are ideal for any climate and time of day as they open up in the summer and day time to let sunlight in and close during the winter. They are also lightweight and mobile, two very important features of a home for the thousands of people fleeing wars and natural disasters in their home countries, forced to make tents their new homes.

On her website, Abeer Seikaly says, “In this space, the refugees find a place to pause from their turbulent worlds, a place to weave the tapestry of their new lives. They weave their shelter into home.”

For more information: Visit Abeer Seikaly’s website.

Prefabulous and Sustainable: Building and Customizing an Affordable, Energy-Efficient Home  book cover          Design Like You Give A Damn: Architectural Responses To Humanitarian Crises  cover

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 08/10/2015.

Lina Khalifeh, Founder of SheFighter

SheFighter: Empowering Women Through Self-Defense


“I didn’t find one real solution for violence against women,” says Lina Khalifeh. And so she decided to take matters into her own hands. In 2010, starting in her parent’s basement, the young Lina Khalifeh founded SheFighter in Jordan. Its aim is “to empower women both mentally and physiologically through self-defense techniques”. According to their website, many efforts and initiatives that focus on dealing with violence against women choose to concentrate on the social and psychological aspects, but what sets SheFighter apart is that it also takes protection into account. They talk about harassment and share stories but they also address prevention and teach self-defense.

Upon winning first place in the education category of the Challenge Cup in Amman, Khalifeh went on to compete in Washington, where her efforts were recognized and highlighted in President Obama’s speech. Lina is a certified trainer and has more than 17 years’ experience in various martial arts, from boxing to Tae Kwon Do, in which she holds a black belt.

When Lina was starting out, many men and women in society did not support the idea of empowering women through self-defense, but the numbers would soon prove them wrong. So far, Lina has taught around 10,000 women how to defend themselves. SheFighter has about 800 trainers and sometimes holds workshops where as many as 200 women are trained at a time. The studio has also expanded to include a wider variety of courses, such as SheCombo and SheYoga.

For more information: Visit SheFighter’s official website, and follow them on Facebook.

Interested in learning more about self-defense? These great books will get you on the right path:


This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 16/07/2015.

omar salame- this week in palestine august issue

This Week in Palestine: “A Day in the Life”


This month, the Palestinian magazine This Week in Palestine offers its readers a glimpse into the day-to-day lives of Palestinians from all walks of life from a Bedouin and a working mother to a Harvard student and an acoustician. The articles in the issue introduce Palestinians we rarely see in the news. Some tell stories of overcoming struggles such as that of Nesma Al-Ghola, the first visually impaired woman to receive a master’s degree in Interpretation of Quran Sciences. Another article describes a day in the life of the fourth generation Palestinian-Chilean, Omar Salame. Yet another article introduces Madeline Kullab, Gaza’s youngest and only female fisher.

To spend a day with any of these Palestinians, read the August issue on This Week in Palestine’s website.

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 09/08/2015.

Khalid Al Ameri

Follow This Emirati For a Dose of Positivity and Empowerment


Khalid Al Ameri, Emirati blogger, columnist, and motivational speaker is on a mission to change the world for the better. How? Through his passion for writing. In his articles and posts, Khalid discusses social issues through stories from his personal life.

Al Ameri talks about believing in yourself and having the courage to follow your dreams, writes about marriage and relationships and tweets empowering messages. His online presence is made even more unique through his sharing of precious family moments. In one piece for example, along with a photo of his son hugging him tightly, Khalid shares, “Our moments on this earth are limited, but what isn’t limited is how beautiful we can make each moment.” Through simple and honest words, Al Ameri reminds us of the things that matter most in life and of our ability to lead better, happier lives.

Khalid Al Ameri’s openness about the lessons he’s learned and the personal moments he captures and shares, as well as his commitment to making the world a better place through the positivity of his words and actions make him one person you must follow.

For more information: Follow @KhalidAlAmeri on Twitter and visit his website.

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 13/08/2015.

The Talentology logo

Discover Your Talents With The Talentology


There are all kinds of sciences that one can learn about: biology, geology, meteorology and also talentology.The Talentology, a training company in Jordan founded in 2008 by Ahmad Al-Assad, offers fun and practical training to different clients from companies to students and fresh graduates. With the belief that people doing the work they love and are good at eventually leads to national development and prosperity, The Talentology aims to help youth acquire the knowledge, skills and positive attitude needed to excel at the workplace by discovering their talents. “Talents are basically like diamonds; they are natural, sometimes disguised as normal stones. That’s why we need to nurture them, and put effort to get beautiful results,” says Ahmad Al-Assad.

In a short web series targeted at youth, Al-Assad takes viewers on a trip to discover their talents and stand out in what they do. Here are some of his tips:

  1. Everyone has a talent; you just have to allow yourself to discover what yours is by trying out new things. You’ll know you’re good at something if before the activity you’re excited to start, while doing it you lose track of time and once it’s over you can’t wait to do it again. Of course, you should also enjoy the activity and excel at it. Finding out what you enjoy will get you one step closer to discovering your talents.
  1. Set goals to develop your talent and commit to them.
  1. Surround yourself with people who are already in the field you want to work in and who share the same enthusiasm. This is your tribe and will help you develop your talent.

For more information and a free personality test visit The Talentology’s website. You can also follow them on Facebook.

This article was originally published on BarakaBits on 21/08/2015.