Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad
Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad is a Jordanian prince, professor of philosophy, a direct descendant of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. He is the son of his first wife, Princess Firyal, he is a grandson of King Talal of Jordan and thus a first cousin of King Abdullah II and thirteenth in the line of succession to the Jordanian throne. He is well known for his religious initiatives, about which a book was published in 2013, he attended. He attended Princeton University: receiving a BA in Comparative Literature, Graduating with Highest Honours, Summa cum laude, he received his PhD in Modern and Medieval Languages and Literatures with a thesis titled, "What is Falling in Love?: A Study of the Literary Archetype of Love." University of Cambridge: He attended Al-Azhar University, College of Usul al-Din, Cairo receiving his PhD in Islamic Philosophy, awarded highest honors on January 16, 2010 with thesis title: Love in the Holy Qur'an. Chief Advisor to King Abdullah II for Religious and Cultural Affairs and Personal Envoy of King Abdullah II.
Special Advisor to and Personal Envoy of King Abdullah II of Jordan. Advisor for Tribal Affairs and Cultural Secretary to King Abdullah II of Jordan. Advisor to King Hussein of Jordan for Tribal Affairs.. Cultural Secretary to King Hussein of Jordan. Officer in the Royal Jordanian Desert Police Force:Promoted to First Lieutenant. Commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. Has served Jordan as Regent in the absence of King Abdullah II from the country; the Hashemite Fund for the Building and Maintenance of the Blessed Aqsa Mosque and the Noble Dome of the Rock:Chairman of the Board of Trustees,The Royal Steering Committee for the Amman Message Islamic InitiativeChairman of the Committee The Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic ThoughtChairman of Board of Trustees. Founder and Chairman of the Board Ex Officio of the World Islamic Sciences and Education University, Jordan. Founder and Director of The Great Tafsir Project; the National Park of the Site of the Baptism of ChristFounder and Chairman of the Board for the National Park.
Founder and Chairman of the Royal Committee. Founder and Deputy Chairman of the Royal Committee. National Committee for Religious Endowments:Member of Committee. Royal Committee for the Building and Restoration of the Tombs of the Prophets and the Companions:Member of the Committee. Al-Balqa` Applied University:Founding Chairman of the Board of Trustees; the Royal Commission to Investigate the Conditions and Treatment of Foreign Students in Jordan:Chairman. National Examination Council:Member of Council. National Committee for Higher Education:Chairman of Finance Sub-Committee. Member of Committee. National Committee for Lower Education:Member of Committee. Royal Committee for the Preservation and Development of Camel Livestock:Founding Chairman of the Committee. Committee for Tribal Lands and Claims:Head of Ministerial Committee. Royal Institute for Development and Charitable Works:Founder and Executive Director and Member of Board of Trustees. Royal Committee for the Endowment of Underprivileged Schools and Tribal Areas:Founding Chairman of Committee.
Jordan Amateur Boxing Association:President. Jordan Basketball Federation:Honorary President. President. Professor of Islamic Philosophy at University of Jordan. Appointed as Full Professor on December 12, 2005. Associate Professor of Islamic Philosophy at Al al-Bayt University. Appointed as Associate Professor. Assistant Research Professor at University of Jordan. Appointed as Research Professor; the site of baptism of Jesus had been known to be around the Jordan River, but no one knew where. An abandoned site in Jordan overlooking the river, was mined in 1967 due to an acquired front line position during the Six-Day War. In 1994 after the signing of the Israel–Jordan peace treaty, Prince Ghazi, interested in religious history, was searching the area after a monk convinced him to take a look around of what was thought to be the baptism site; when they found evidence of ruins, enough to encourage de-mining and further development. Soon afterwards, there were several archaeological digs, tourists influx and pilgrimage activity, several papal and state visits.
In July 2015, the site was designated as a UNESCO world heritage site and is now known as the most location for the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. Prince Ghazi gave the welcoming address on the occasion of the pilgrimage of Pope Benedict XVI in Jordan, May 9, 2009, his wide-ranging speech, during Benedict's visit to the new King Hussein Mosque in Amman, was carried live on Eternal Word Television Network TV. It gave an account of Muslim-Christian relationships, acknowledged the pope's kindness toward Muslims and made an appeal on behalf of Muslim minorities; the speech noted that crusaders had damaged the Chr
Amman is the capital and most populous city of Jordan, the country's economic and cultural centre. Situated in north-central Jordan, Amman is the administrative centre of the Amman Governorate; the city has a land area of 1,680 square kilometres. Today, Amman is considered to be among the most modernized Arab cities, it is a major tourist destination in the region among Arab and European tourists. The earliest evidence of settlement in Amman is in a Neolithic site known as'Ain Ghazal, where some of the oldest human statues found dating to 7250 BC were uncovered. During the Iron Age, the city was known as Ammon, home to the Kingdom of the Ammonites, it was named Philadelphia during its Greek and Roman periods, was called Amman during the Islamic period. Abandoned for much of the medieval and post-medieval period, modern Amman dates to the late 19th century when Circassian immigrants were settled there by the Ottoman Empire in 1867; the first municipal council was established in 1909. Amman witnessed rapid growth after its designation as Jordan's capital in 1921, after several successive waves of refugees: Palestinians in 1948 and 1967.
It was built on seven hills but now spans over 19 hills combining 27 districts, which are administered by the Greater Amman Municipality headed by its mayor Yousef Shawarbeh. Areas of Amman have gained their names from either the hills or the valleys they occupy, such as Jabal Lweibdeh and Wadi Abdoun. East Amman is predominantly filled with historic sites that host cultural activities, while West Amman is more modern and serves as the economic center of the city. Two million visitors arrived in Amman in 2014, which made it the 93rd most visited city in the world and the 5th most visited Arab city. Amman has a fast growing economy, it is ranked Beta− on the global city index. Moreover, it was named one of the Middle East and North Africa's best cities according to economic, labor and socio-cultural factors; the city is among the most popular locations in the Arab world for multinational corporations to set up their regional offices, alongside Doha and only behind Dubai. It is expected that in the next 10 years these three cities will capture the largest share of multinational corporation activity in the region.
Amman derives its name from the 13th century BC when the Ammonites named it "Rabbath Ammon", with the term Rabbath meaning the "Capital" or the "King's Quarters". Over time, the term "Rabbath" was no longer used and the city became known as "Ammon"; the influence of new civilizations that conquered the city changed its name to "Amman". In the Hebrew Bible, it is referred to as "Rabbat ʿAmmon". However, Ptolemy II Philadelphus, the Macedonian ruler of the Ptolemaic Kingdom who reigned from 283 to 246 BC, renamed the city to "Philadelphia" after occupying it; the name was given as an adulation to Philadelphus. The neolithic site of'Ain Ghazal was found in the outskirts of Amman. At its height, around 7000 BC, it was inhabited by ca. 3000 people. At that time the site was a typical aceramic Neolithic village, its houses were rectangular mud-bricked buildings that included a main square living room, whose walls were made up of lime plaster. The site was discovered in 1974. By 1982, when the excavations started, around 600 meters of road ran through the site.
Despite the damage brought by urban expansion, the remains of'Ain Ghazal provided a wealth of information.'Ain Ghazal is well known for a set of small human statues found in 1983, when local archaeologists stumbled upon the edge of a large pit 2.5 meters containing them. These statues are human figures made with white plaster, with painted clothes, in some cases ornamental tattoos. Thirty-two figures were found in two caches, fifteen of them full figures, fifteen busts, two fragmentary heads. Three of the busts were two-headed, the significance of, not clear. In the 13th century BC Amman was the capital of the Ammonites, became known as "Rabbath Ammon". Ammon provided several natural resources to the region, including sandstone and limestone, along with a productive agricultural sector that made Ammon a vital location along the King's Highway, the ancient trade route connecting Egypt with Mesopotamia and Anatolia; as with the Edomites and Moabites, trade along this route gave the Ammonites considerable revenue.
Ammonites worshiped. Excavations by archaeologists near Amman Civil Airport uncovered a temple, which included an altar containing many human bone fragments; the bones showed evidence of burning, which led to the assumption that the altar functioned as a pyre. Today, several Ammonite ruins across Amman exist, such as Qasr Al-Abd, Rujm Al-Malfouf and some parts of the Amman Citadel; the ruins of Rujm Al-Malfouf consist of a stone watchtower used to ensure protection of their capital and several store rooms to the east. The city was conquered by the Assyrian Empire, followed by the Persian Empire. Conquest of the Middle East and Central Asia by Alexander the Great consolidated the influence of Hellenistic culture; the Greeks founded new cities in the area of modern-day Jordan, including Umm Qays and Amman. Ptolemy II Philadelphus, the Macedonian ruler of Egypt, who occupied and rebuilt the city, na
Sydney is the state capital of New South Wales and the most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Located on Australia's east coast, the metropolis surrounds Port Jackson and extends about 70 km on its periphery towards the Blue Mountains to the west, Hawkesbury to the north, the Royal National Park to the south and Macarthur to the south-west. Sydney is made up of 40 local government areas and 15 contiguous regions. Residents of the city are known as "Sydneysiders"; as of June 2017, Sydney's estimated metropolitan population was 5,230,330 and is home to 65% of the state's population. Indigenous Australians have inhabited the Sydney area for at least 30,000 years, thousands of engravings remain throughout the region, making it one of the richest in Australia in terms of Aboriginal archaeological sites. During his first Pacific voyage in 1770, Lieutenant James Cook and his crew became the first Europeans to chart the eastern coast of Australia, making landfall at Botany Bay and inspiring British interest in the area.
In 1788, the First Fleet of convicts, led by Arthur Phillip, founded Sydney as a British penal colony, the first European settlement in Australia. Phillip named the city Sydney in recognition of 1st Viscount Sydney. Penal transportation to New South Wales ended soon after Sydney was incorporated as a city in 1842. A gold rush occurred in the colony in 1851, over the next century, Sydney transformed from a colonial outpost into a major global cultural and economic centre. After World War II, it experienced mass migration and became one of the most multicultural cities in the world. At the time of the 2011 census, more than 250 different languages were spoken in Sydney. In the 2016 Census, about 35.8% of residents spoke a language other than English at home. Furthermore, 45.4% of the population reported having been born overseas, making Sydney the 3rd largest foreign born population of any city in the world after London and New York City, respectively. Despite being one of the most expensive cities in the world, the 2018 Mercer Quality of Living Survey ranks Sydney tenth in the world in terms of quality of living, making it one of the most livable cities.
It is classified as an Alpha+ World City by Globalization and World Cities Research Network, indicating its influence in the region and throughout the world. Ranked eleventh in the world for economic opportunity, Sydney has an advanced market economy with strengths in finance and tourism. There is a significant concentration of foreign banks and multinational corporations in Sydney and the city is promoted as Australia's financial capital and one of Asia Pacific's leading financial hubs. Established in 1850, the University of Sydney is Australia's first university and is regarded as one of the world's leading universities. Sydney is home to the oldest library in Australia, State Library of New South Wales, opened in 1826. Sydney has hosted major international sporting events such as the 2000 Summer Olympics; the city is among the top fifteen most-visited cities in the world, with millions of tourists coming each year to see the city's landmarks. Boasting over 1,000,000 ha of nature reserves and parks, its notable natural features include Sydney Harbour, the Royal National Park, Royal Botanic Garden and Hyde Park, the oldest parkland in the country.
Built attractions such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House are well known to international visitors. The main passenger airport serving the metropolitan area is Kingsford-Smith Airport, one of the world's oldest continually operating airports. Established in 1906, Central station, the largest and busiest railway station in the state, is the main hub of the city's rail network; the first people to inhabit the area now known as Sydney were indigenous Australians having migrated from northern Australia and before that from southeast Asia. Radiocarbon dating suggests human activity first started to occur in the Sydney area from around 30,735 years ago. However, numerous Aboriginal stone tools were found in Western Sydney's gravel sediments that were dated from 45,000 to 50,000 years BP, which would indicate that there was human settlement in Sydney earlier than thought; the first meeting between the native people and the British occurred on 29 April 1770 when Lieutenant James Cook landed at Botany Bay on the Kurnell Peninsula and encountered the Gweagal clan.
He noted in his journal that they were somewhat hostile towards the foreign visitors. Cook was not commissioned to start a settlement, he spent a short time collecting food and conducting scientific observations before continuing further north along the east coast of Australia and claiming the new land he had discovered for Britain. Prior to the arrival of the British there were 4,000 to 8,000 native people in Sydney from as many as 29 different clans; the earliest British settlers called the natives Eora people. "Eora" is the term the indigenous population used to explain their origins upon first contact with the British. Its literal meaning is "from this place". Sydney Cove from Port Jackson to Petersham was inhabited by the Cadigal clan; the principal language groups were Darug and Dharawal. The earliest Europeans to visit the area noted that the indigenous people were conducting activities such as camping and fishing, using trees for bark and food, collecting shells, cooking fish. Britain—before that, England—and Ireland had for a long time been sending their convicts across the Atlantic to the American colonies.
That trade was ended with the Declaration of Independence by the United States in 1776. Britain decided in 1786 to found a new penal outpost in the territory discovered by Cook some 16 years ear
Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum
Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum is the senior wife and consort of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ruler of Dubai. They were married on 26 April 1979, she is the mother of twelve of her husband's twenty-three children, including his heir apparent Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai. Sheikha Hind is the paternal granddaughter of Juma bin Maktoum Al Maktoum, brother of Emir Saeed II of Dubai, grandfather of the current Sheikh, she is the niece of Sheikh Ahmad Bin Juma Al Maktoum who died in 2009. Her mother Sheikha Shaikha bint Saeed bin Maktoum Al Maktoum is the daughter of Emir Saeed II of Dubai, making Sheikha Hind a first cousin to her husband through her mother as well as second cousin of her husband through her father. In 1979, at the age of 17, Hind Bint Maktoum married her cousin, Sheikh Mohammed Rashid 13 years older than her, their wedding was Dubai's first major public event. Elaborate arrangements were made to celebrate the event. A 20,000 seater stadium was built to host the wedding which featured displays of horse and camel riding, an aerobatics display by the Dubai Air Force.
The total cost of the wedding celebrations was estimated to be around $100 million. After her marriage, Sheikha Hind remained a traditional Arab wife and faithfully follows the Islamic purdah system by never accompanying her husband to his race meetings, she is seen in other public events. Her photograph has never been shown publicly. Being the Sheikh's senior wife and consort, Sheikha Hind is the royal family's chief matriarch and resides with her family in the Zabeel Palace in Dubai; the Sheikh's junior wife leads a separate existence. Sheikha Hind oversees the upbringing of her orphans she has adopted out of charity. Sheikha Hind has 12 children The tournament was launched on December 17, 2012, at the Dubai World Trade Centre and was organized by the Women's Sport Committee of the Dubai Sports Council, under the patronage of Sheikha Hind, under the guidance of her son, Shiekh Hamdan, the Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Sports Council; the sports tournament is meant to encourage women to come out and participate in fitness and sports activities.
In January, 2013, Sheikha Hind, donated three planes to airlift the United Arab Emirates national football team’s fans from Manama in Bahrain to Dubai following UAE's splendid 1-0 victory over Kuwait in the semi-final of the 2013 Gulf Cup of Nations. The initiative was appreciated by the sports community in general and the UAEFA in particular. In June 2013, The Mohammed bin Rashid Charity and Humanitarian Establishment distributed 4100 smart cards of Ramadan Ration by donation of Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum in its charitable programmes for the Holy Month of Ramadan, aiming at distributing basic foodstuff to the needy and poor families in the emirate of Dubai and northern areas. Ibrahim Boumelha, Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation, expressed his gratitude and thanks to Sheikha Hind for her moral and material support for various charitable projects, undertaken by the Foundation for the benefit of the citizens and residents expatriates in the Holy Month of Ramadan. 12 February 1962 – 26 April 1979: Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum 26 April 1979 – 4 January 2006: Her Highness Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum 4 January 2006 – present: Her Majesty Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum,Malika of Dubai
Queen Noor of Jordan
Noor Al-Hussein is the queen dowager of Jordan as the widow of King Hussein. She was his fourth spouse and queen consort between their marriage in 1978 and his death in 1999, she is the longest-standing member of the Board of Commissioners of the International Commission on Missing Persons. As of 2011, she is president of the United World Colleges movement and an advocate of the anti-nuclear weapons proliferation campaign Global Zero. In 2015, Queen Noor received Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson Award for her public service. Queen Noor was born Lisa Najeeb Halaby in Washington, D. C, she is the daughter of Doris Carlquist. Her father was a Navy experimental test pilot, an airline executive, government official, he served as United States Assistant Secretary of Defense in the Truman administration, before being appointed by John F. Kennedy to head the Federal Aviation Administration. Najeeb Halaby had a private-sector career, serving as CEO of Pan American World Airways from 1969 to 1972; the Halabys had two children following Lisa.
They divorced in 1977. Her mother, was of Swedish descent and died on 25 December 2015 age 97. Noor's paternal grandfather, Najeeb Elias Halaby, a Syrian immigrant, was a petroleum broker, according to 1920 Census records. Merchant Stanley Marcus, recalled that in the mid-1920s, Halaby opened Halaby Galleries, a rug boutique and interior-decorating shop, at Neiman Marcus in Dallas and ran it with his Texas-born wife, Laura Wilkins. Najeeb Halaby died shortly afterward, his estate was unable to continue the new enterprise. According to research done in 2010 for the PBS series Faces of America by Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. of Harvard University, her great-grandfather, Elias Halaby, came to New York around 1891, one of the earliest Syrian immigrants to the United States. He had been a provincial treasurer in the Ottoman Empire, he left Syria with his two eldest sons. His wife and remaining children joined him in the United States in 1894, he died three years leaving his teenage sons and Najeeb, to run his import business.
Najeeb moved to Dallas around 1910 and assimilated into American society. Halaby attended schools in New York and California before entering National Cathedral School from fourth to eighth grade, she attended The Chapin School in New York City for two years went on to graduate from Concord Academy, a high school in Concord, Massachusetts. She entered Princeton University with its first coeducational freshman class, received a BA in architecture and urban planning in 1973. At Princeton, she was a member of the school's first women's ice hockey team. After she graduated from Princeton, Halaby moved to Australia, where she worked for a firm that specialized in planning new towns with a burgeoning interest in the Middle East which because of her Syrian roots had special appeal. After a year, she accepted a job offer from Llewelyn Davies, a British architectural and planning firm, in 1975, employed to design a model capitol city center in Tehran, Iran; when increasing political instability forced the company to relocate to the UK, she traveled to the Arab world and decided to apply to Columbia University's graduate school of journalism while taking a temporary aviation facility research job in Amman.
She left Arab Air and accepted a job with Alia Airlines to become Director of Facilities Planning and Design. Halaby and the king became friends, their friendship evolved and the couple became engaged in 1978. Halaby wed King Hussein on 15 June 1978 in Amman. Before her marriage, she accepted her husband's Sunni Islamic religion and upon the marriage, changed her name from Lisa Halaby to the royal name Noor Al-Hussein; the wedding was a traditional Muslim ceremony. Her conversion to Islam and wedding to the King of Jordan received extensive coverage in the Western press. However, because of her Syrian grandfather, she was considered by most of the population to be an Arab returning home rather than a foreigner, she soon gained power and influence by using her role as King Hussein's consort and her education in urban planning for charitable work and improvement to the country's economy, as well as the empowerment of women in Jordanian economic life. Noor assumed management of the royal household and three stepchildren, Princess Haya bint Al Hussein, Prince Ali bin Al Hussein and Abir Muhaisen.
Noor and Hussein had four children: Prince Hamzah, Crown Prince from 1999 to 2004, who has five daughters. Prince Hashim, who has three daughters and one son. Princess Iman, who has one son Princess Raiyah. Queen Noor founded the King Hussein Foundation in 1979, it includes the Noor Al Hussein Foundation and eight specialized development institutions: the Jubilee Institute, the Information and Research Center, the National Music Conservatory, the National Center for Culture and Arts and the Institute for Family Health, the Community Development Program, Tamweelcom the Jordan Micro Credit Company and the Islamic microfinance company, Ethmar. She is the Honorary Chairperson of JOrchestra. In addition, Queen Noor launched a youth initiative, the International Arab Youth Congress, in 1980. Queen No
Queen Rania of Jordan
Rania Al-Abdullah is the queen consort of Jordan. Born in Kuwait to a Palestinian family, she moved to Jordan for work, where she met the prince Abdullah. Since marrying the now King of Jordan in 1993, she has become known for her advocacy work related to education, community empowerment, cross-cultural dialogue and micro-finance, she is an avid user of social media and she maintains pages on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. She has been awarded various decorations by governments. Rania Al-Yassin was born to Palestinian parents, she received a degree in Business Administration from the American University in Cairo. Upon her graduation from the American University, she worked in marketing for Citibank, followed by a job with Apple Inc. in Amman. She met Jordanian Abdullah bin Al-Hussein, a prince at that time, at a dinner party in August 1992. Six months they announced their engagement. On 10 June 1993, they were married; the couple has four children: Crown Prince Hussein Princess Iman Princess Salma Prince Hashem Her husband ascended the throne on 7 February 1999, proclaimed her queen on 22 March 1999.
Without the proclamation she would have been a princess consort, like her mother-in-law, Princess Muna al-Hussein. Since her marriage, Queen Rania has used her position to advocate for various sectors of society in Jordan and beyond. Over the past few years, Queen Rania has launched and given patronage to several initiatives in education and learning. In July 2005, in partnership with the Ministry of Education, the King and Queen launched an annual teachers’ award, the Queen Rania Award for Excellence in Education; the Queen is Chairperson of Jordan's first interactive children's museum. Opened in May 2007, it aims to encourage and nurture lifelong learning for children and their families. In April 2008, the Queen launched “Madrasati”, a public-private initiative aimed at refurbishing 500 of Jordan’s public schools over a five-year period. In higher education, the Queen Rania Scholarship Program partners with several universities from around the world. Queen Rania is Chairperson of the Royal Health Awareness Society.
Queen Rania's first venture was the establishment of the Jordan River Foundation in 1995. The Jordan River Children Program was developed by Queen Rania to place children’s welfare above political agendas and cultural taboos; this led to the launch, in 1998, of JRF’s Child Safety Program, which addresses the immediate needs of children at risk from abuse and initiated a long-term campaign to increase public awareness about violence against children. The deaths of two children in Amman as a result of child abuse in early 2009 led Queen Rania to call for an emergency meeting of government and non-government stakeholders to discuss where the system was failing. In 2009, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of her husband's accession to the throne, Queen Rania launched a community champion award in March to highlight the accomplishments of groups and individuals who have helped their local communities. Queen Rania has stated that an essential aspect of education is to equip young people with the necessary skills to perform well in the workplace.
She initiated the Al-Aman Fund for the Future of Orphans in 2003, has partnered with international universities providing scholarships for Jordanian students abroad. She supports INJAZ Al-Arab, established by Save the Children in 1999, on with Junior Achievement and launched as a Jordanian non-profit organization by the Queen in 2001. In her capacity as Regional Ambassador of INJAZ Al-Arab, she has taught classes, engaged in dialogue with young people in other countries, she chaired a discussion with entrepreneurs in celebration of INJAZ Al-Arab's 10th anniversary, showcasing alumni's success stories At the 2008 World Economic Forum in Davos, she launched the "Empowering One Million Arab Youth by 2018" campaign, conceived by INJAZ Arabia. In November 2000, in recognition of her commitment to the cause of children and youth, the United Nations Children’s Fund invited Queen Rania to join its Global Leadership Initiative; the Queen worked alongside other world leaders, including former South African President Nelson Mandela, in a global movement seeking to improve the welfare of children.
In January 2007, Queen Rania was named UNICEF's first Eminent Advocate for Children. In August 2009, Queen Rania became Honorary Global Chair of the United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative; as a longtime supporter of the Global Campaign for Education, Queen Rania met with children and inspirational women in South Africa, both in the cities of Johannesburg and Soweto, in March 2009. Queen Rania and the women took turns reading a short story out of The Big Read to the children, in an effort to encourage literacy. One of the stories in the book, “Maha of the Mountains”, was contributed by Queen Rania. In Soweto, she was the first to write her name in the back of the Big Read, before passing it on to everyone else to write their name. During her April 2009 US trip, Queen Rania joined leading education advocates Congresswoman Nita Lowey and Counsellor to the Secretary of the Treasury Gene Sperling to launch "The Big Read" as part of Global Campaign for Education's global action week calling for quality basic education for all children.
She was hosted by first lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, during that same