The UNHCR report that over 5 million Syrian refugees have fled to surrounding countries, there are more than 1.3 million people taking refuge in Jordan, many of them children and orphans.
In a commitment to the Syrian refugee children in Jordan this is the 5th in a series of psychosocial interventions that CWB Ireland have brought to the country since the civil war broke out in neighbouring Syria 6 years ago.
Clowns Without Borders Ireland embarked on a tour of Syrian refugee camps in Jordan with Hullabaloo a new circus show aimed to bring emotional relief to children and their families through laughter and wonder. The circus troupe performed in the notorious Zaatari and Azraq camps among many others. The show also played for urban refugees and their inundated host communities in an effort to relieve trauma and encourage integration.
HULLABALOO toured Jordan from Sunday the 2nd until Thursday the 20th of April’17. The cast consisted of Laura Ivers, Maria Corcoran, Tony Mahon and Hillas Smith.
The multi-talented team performed and gave workshops for children and adults, they will be working in cooperation with agencies in the field such as MEC [Middle East Children’s Institute], One Love and several other smaller NGOs.
This Circus troupe rolled out incredible feats of wonder and awe. Their silly skills include hula hoops, unicycles, astounding juggling and dynamic acrobatics, ‘Hullabaloo’ was directed by Angelica Santander.
This 2017 tour continued Clowns Without Borders Ireland annual work in Jordan, a country with over 1.5 million Syrian and 2 million Palestinian refugees. As well as this Jordan is host to refugees from Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Somalia and others.
Our audience was comprised of 4, 800 young refugees, their families and communities living in refugee camps and attending refugee centres and school programmes across Jordan. We also worked on this tour with a number of orphanages through Suriyat for Orphans and One Love Jordan as well as centres for young people with disabilities such as the Al Hussein Society. The audiences were comprised of mostly Syrian refugees with a mixture of people from Iraq, Iran, Afganistan, Palestine, Somalia and Jordan.
A testimonial from Faten Al-Malki, organiser of One Love Jordan:
“You are doing an amazing job, you cannot imagine how much the orphans of war from Iraq were happy. Some cried when they left, one of them asked me if they will come back or go back on TV. Another orphan asked me if they will come back in their sleep. It was very touching really. Words cannot express their feelings really. I want to thank you again for giving the orphans the chance to live this beautiful moment.”