Posted on February 23, 2011

Eight groundbreaking Youth Clubs funded by Reach Out To Asia (ROTA) and Vodafone Qatar are giving Qatar youth the chance to make a world of difference and play a positive role in shaping their communities.

Designed to unlock youth potential, the eight projects are part of a QR 9 million sponsorship partnership between ROTA and Vodafone to empower the young people of Qatar to change their world by developing the skills they need to tackle local community projects.

Essa Al Mannai, Director of Reach Out To Asia, said: “Young people are incredibly passionate about making a positive difference to their community. Our partnership with Vodafone will help to transform ideas into reality and we are pleased to support these projects as part of our vision for a flourishing Qatar.”

Al Khor-based youth group Tout Le Monde is promoting environment-friendly living with its Shades of Green project, raising awareness about the impact our modern lifestyles have on the local environment. By supplying paper bags to local stores, providing energy-saving light bulbs, celebrating Earth Hour and drawing an eco-mural, Tout Le Monde aims to influence Al Khor residents about how a few simple changes can create a sustainable lifestyle.

Video for Advocacy, a project created by Film for Change Youth Club of Qatar University and Northwestern University students, is a community-based initiative to teach 20 ROTA Youth Service Club  members to create high quality, cutting-edge social awareness videos. Collaborating with the Network, a series of filmmaking and advocacy workshops will develop story boards and teach the basic techniques of filmmaking to empower students to address key youth issues.

“I have been nothing but inspired by these young people – by their passion, enthusiasm, and commitment,” said Luisa Gentile, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at Vodafone Qatar. “These young leaders are already making a real difference in their communities, and I know they will continue to inspire in the future,” continued Luisa Gentile.

Top Shabab’s ‘I Care’ project aims to change the attitude of Qatar University students towards labourers, who because of a lack of education at a young age are forced low-paid jobs with limited opportunities to improve their future, the project hopes to change hearts and minds about the people who labor hard to create Qatar’s prosperity wealth.

Youth Without Borders (YWB) plans to raise awareness about the poor conditions of recreational and sports facilities in Gaza and the West Bank with its Sports Education for Palestinian Youth project. While many organisations tackle the basic humanitarian problems of people in Gaza, YWB is focusing on the needs of Palestinian youth with plans for a charity fundraising campaign including a series of lectures, fun sports and dance competitions, and a Palestinian cultural night.

“We’re supporting young people to become active citizens - opening up ways for them to change their world for the better, through education, opportunities and campaigning,” added Essa Al Mannai.

The Political Society’s I AM POLITE project wants to influence Qatari children’s behavior to reflect the traditional values of respect for adults and cultural values. After collecting data from school field trips to examine how teachers and children interact, I AM POLITE plans to combine education and entertainment by creating a Qatari social board game for primary school students which rewards their good behaviour.

Back to Future, the project of ROTA-Vodafone Youth Club; The Changers, is taking on the challenge of developing the human potential of 24 ambitious students as they discover their talents, their future path and themselves. After helping each student understand the uniqueness of their personality, the project examine possible academic options through visits to local colleges and universities and a shadow program for students to experience real university life.

H.O.P.E. ‘Every Action Counts’ aims to make Education City students aware of environmental issues, the need to save energy and emit less harmful gases. After thorough research, H.O.P.E. is publishing a useful list of 365 actions that everyone can take to conserve energy and plans are underway for a ‘No Print Day’ at Texas A&M University-Qatar to highlight the unnecessary use of ink, paper and energy.

Fast and Last is the project of CNAQ ROTA Youth Service Club to increase awareness about the importance of driving and road safety among CNAQ students and everyone in Qatar. The project will also engage the families of students in a series of lectures and activities that aim to positively impact and change the behaviours and attitudes of young people towards driving safety.

More details about the inspirational ROTA-Vodafone Youth Community projects can be found on the ROTA (www.reachouttoasia.org) and Vodafone Qatar (www.vodafone.com.qa) websites.

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