– July 25 2019
Amal*, 17, is a multiple gold medalist in taekwondo and sports trainer for children in Amman, Jordan. For this ambitious young woman, it all started two years ago when Jordan’s national taekwondo champion visited the SOS Children’s Village Amman as a volunteer.
Amal knew of the taekwondo champion Dana Haidar Touran before she visited the SOS Children’s Village where Amal lives. Amal used to watch Dana competing on TV and often thought that she would want to be like her one day. So when Dana offered training to children, Amal did not think twice. She immediately joined the classes.
“I won’t give up. I’ll continue until I become a renowned champion. I’m optimistic, I want to become a champion and nothing will stop me,” says Amal with a determined look.
Since November 2018, Amal has competed in four championships, winning the gold medal in all of them. Each victory adds to her determination to work even harder. Before each competition, Amal sits alone, repeats to herself that she will win, pictures the victory, and then fights for it with bravery.
When Amal wins, she usually runs to one specific person at home to share her happiness with him. “The first person I immediately want to see when I win is Uncle Musa, because he supports me a lot. He always takes me to training, and follows up on my performance,” says Amal. Musa Mourtada is SOS activities coordinator in Amman.
The discipline and fun of taekwondo inspired Amal to come up with a social project idea to make sport accessible to children who live in remote areas. Her project is a mobile bus that carries sports equipment, enabling children to exercise whenever and wherever the bus stops.
With this idea in mind, Amal was the youngest female entrant in a competition about sporting initiatives ideas – with a prize of a grant to support the winning project. With the help of Musa, she wrote a project concept note that she presented to the national grant jury. She is now among the finalists of the competition.
“I had four minutes to present the project, but I did it in one-and-a-half minutes, and convinced the jury of my idea,” says Amal.
To gain experience for her project she joined an association as a volunteer to train other children. Now, every Saturday she gives football and running training to children from SOS families and the surrounding community.
“To become a champion one needs to draw a map. I hope I’ll become a champion and open my own taekwondo club,” says Amal.
Photos: Salma Inani.
*Name has been changed to protect privacy.