Welcome to USAID SCHEP
The Sustainable Cultural Heritage
Through Engagement of Local Communities Project (USAID SCHEP), is a USAID
project implemented by the American
Center of Oriental Research (ACOR) that uses a unique methodology for
preserving, managing and promoting cultural heritage resources in Jordan
through a community-first approach. The project began in 2014 and is set
to continue until 2022.
Local communities are the primary stakeholders and beneficiaries of our programming. SCHEP helps communities around archaeological sites throughout Jordan harness the potential of their cultural heritage resources (CHRs) to create opportunities for education, employment and economic development.
SCHEP’s ultimate goal is the self-sufficiency and sustainability of Jordan’s CHR sector. We therefore focus on providing training courses and capacity building opportunities for students and heritage professionals, building a strong Jordanian Heritage Community of Practice, facilitating a positive enabling environment for Jordanian CHR institutions, and supporting local, micro- to small-scale enterprises.
Together, SCHEP believes we can build a network of skilled professionals, dedicated communities and strong institutions, ready both to care for Jordan’s cultural heritage resources and build sustainable tourism around them.
The USAID SCHEP Difference
Jordan is home to hundreds of archaeological and economic development projects
but USAID USAID SCHEP has some key features that set it apart.
For locals, by locals: USAID SCHEP locations have “Site Stewards” who act as
liaisons between USAID SCHEP, the project directors, and the host communities.
They are active in the archaeological process, as well as hosting workshops and
events for the host communities. These empowered men and women ensure that USAID
SCHEP activities ultimately serve the best interests of the host communities and
fall in line with the unique social and cultural context.
Marketable, transferable skills: Trainees at USAID SCHEP sites learn best
practices of excavation, conservation, and cultural resource management. After
training in masonry, surveying, documentation, and other skills ready to use
their talents in multiple projects, raising their prospects for future
employment in other arenas.
Moving away from seasonable employment: By empowering communities with real
skills and responsibilities for site development, USAID SCHEP allows for the
possibility of year-round employment.
Promoting cultural heritage as a value: Whether it’s raising awareness of the
historical site in host communities, creating hands-on learning activities for
underserved schools across Jordan, or promotion of USAID SCHEP sites as tourist
attractions, USAID SCHEP ensures that Jordanians and visitors alike appreciate
and value the rich cultural heritage of these sites.
There’s more information about the specific sites we’re focusing on, the
activities we’re participating in, and ways for you to connect with USAID SCHEP
throughout the website. We encourage you to check out our Facebook and Instagram
to get updates about our day-to-day activities. Feel free to contact us if you
have any questions or if you would like to get involved in USAID SCHEP.