Doha Diary, June – July 2018

Garangao festivities being held at the Hamad International Airport during Ramadan this year.

ACS Doha celebrates graduating class of 2018
ACS Doha International School hosted its high school graduation ceremony at the Ritz Carlton hotel to celebrate the achievements of 32 graduates. The graduation is the school’s third since opening in 2011.

The ceremony was attended by parents, teachers, students and members of the ACS Board from the UK, with Ghada Darwish, founder and Chairman of Darwish Law Firm, acting as the ceremony’s guest speaker. The theme of the ceremony was ‘leave a fingerprint’.

Urging the students to think of their legacies, Darwish said: “I believe that we are all defined with the trail we leave behind us, defined by the effect and impact we leave on our family, community, society and humanity. When you do, and whatever you do, make sure it is sustainable and worth doing, and make sure it becomes your legacy; leave a trail, and leave a fingerprint behind.”

HBKU, QU delegates attend Global Education Conference
Showcasing Qatar’s commitment to its higher education sector, delegates from Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) and Qatar University (QU) participated at the internationally renowned NAFSA Annual Conference and Expo in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from May 27 to June 1, 2018. Qatar’s participation was well represented with the HBKU and QU delegates assembling within a dedicated Qatar Pavilion for the duration of the conference.

A non-profit organisation, NAFSA’s mission is to foster education and understanding among people of diverse backgrounds in an effort to build leadership within a global community. With nearly 10,000 attendees visiting from more than 3,500 institutions and organisations in over 100 countries, NAFSA’s annual conference attracts a wide range of academic experts within a uniquely comprehensive international education event.

This year marks HBKU’s fourth participation at the NAFSA conference, giving HBKU and QU an international arena to display their drive for superior education and reconfirm their collaborative efforts.

Sasol expands accessibility to exhibitions
Through its leading community initiative Accessible Qatar (AQ), Sasol, the international integrated chemicals and energy company, has issued accessibility guidelines to improve access for people with disabilities to exhibition stands, and developed a system to conduct accessibility audits for these stands.

Recent exhibitions audited include the International Agricultural Exhibition (AgriteQ 2018), the 15th Project Qatar exhibition, and Cityscape exhibition at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center (DECC). In cooperation with DECC, and based on recommendations from Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), the AQ team of experts developed an electronic stands accessibility audit system. The system makes it easy to conduct accessibility audits for the large number of stands available in each exhibition.

“QTA is working to enhance the tourism sector’s role in achieving future economic and social development for Qatar,” said Ahmed Al Obaidli, Director of Exhibitions at QTA. “Our plans target broad sectors of visitors and residents including the disabled community, which we hope will find Qatar an accessible destination.”

Taqaddam recognises students’ innovative ideas
A safe touch water device, a landmine detector, and a solar-powered parking solution for drivers with disabilities. These were the winning ideas honoured by the British Council and HSBC Bank Middle East at the culmination of their annual Taqaddam life skills programme at La Cigale Hotel, Doha.
Helping to develop resilient youth who can thrive in a rapidly changing work environment, Taqaddam challenges participants to apply their newly-acquired soft skills to present a solution for a global or social problem. This year’s programme attracted participation from 290 students representing 13 schools, with a near equal gender split. Divided into teams, the students presented a total of 12 big ideas for judging.

‘Safe Touch Water’ from Ahmed Bin Hanbal Secondary School for Boys won the first prize. The revolutionary device aims to protect Qatar’s natural water resources by recycling household water through a safe filtration system.

Marriott International’s iftar for cab drivers
As part of its ongoing commitment to the Holy Month of Ramadan, Marriott International celebrated the ninth annual ‘Iftar for Cabs’ initiative at participating Marriott hotels in the Middle East, including eight hotels in Qatar of Marriott Worldwide Business Council (QWMBC).

Catering teams at each hotel prepared Iftar packs which included a diverse selection of food and beverage items. Associates from across various departments within the hotels, including Catering, Administration and Guest Services joined forces to bring the ‘Iftar for Cabs’ initiative to life.

“We thank the cab drivers who support our hotels throughout the year. Iftar for Cabs embodies the spirit of Ramadan and we are extremely proud of our hotel teams as they unite to give back and recognise important members of our community,” said Guido De Wilde, Chief Operating Officer, Middle East, Marriott International.