Rebuilding the west wall at the Al Rousan Family Courtyard

Turquoise Mountain Trust

Founded in 2006 by HRH The Prince of Wales to revive historic areas and traditional crafts. Turquoise Mountain works in Afghanistan, Myanmar and the Middle East to drive economic development whilst preserving unique cultures and traditions.

The Prince of Wales's Charitable Fund (PWCF) has supported the Trust for many years, and has awarded over £850,000 to the Trust in the last three years. Most recently, PWCF awarded £125,000 in March 2021. This grant has directly supported heritage preservation work at Umm Qais, one of Jordan's most important archaeological sites.

The urban regeneration is community-focused and heritage-led, and will support the built heritage, sustainably increase tourism and - most importantly - radically transform the lives and livelihoods of the local and wider community through the employment and education benefits.

In addition to heritage and preservation work, Turquoise Mountain Trust (TMT) deliver artisan training across Afghanistan, Myanmar and the Middle East. TMT are creating a network of artisans to re-energise the craft ecosystem.

They run both entry-level and advanced apprenticeship programmes across a range of traditional crafts, including woodwork, stone-carving, embroidery, and jewellery. Courses are open to all members of the community, including refugees. 

The Turquoise Mountain Trust also deliver heritage courses for children. One attendee, aged ten, said 'I loved embroidery the most as it took my mind away, it made me forget the sad things! For example, I had a fight with one of our neighbours and forgave him, but I kept thinking of what he said. When I was carrying the embroidery needle and the etamine fabric, I forgot what happened. Everything disappeared from my thoughts'.

Since 2006, the Turquoise Mountain Trust has restored over 150 historic buildings, employed and trained thousands of artisans and builders, built over 50 small businesses, and supported and generated over $17 million in sales of traditional crafts to international markets.

To learn more about the work of the Turquoise Mountain Trust, please visit their website here.