The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Qatar (MOFA) signed an agreement to donate 40 million USD from the Qatar Development Fund to support Education Above All’s Al Fakhoora programme. The funds will be used to rebuild and re-equip damaged schools and university buildings, as well as to provide international scholarships for students who wish to pursue studies in disciplines which respond to Gaza’s needs.
The fund will also support training programmes for professionals in both education and health sector. In effect, the agreement will more than double the number the students who are able to benefit from Al Fakhoora scholarships to complete their higher education. The agreement to support Al Fakhoora was reached subsequent to discussions between programme representatives and the Qatar Development Fund, during which Al Fakhoora presented the programme’s work and achievements in Gaza as well as an assessment of the requirements to repair educational facilities and clinics damaged and destroyed in July/August 2014.
HE Dr. Ahmed Bin Mohammed Al Meraikhi, Director of Qatar Development Fund said: “Our contribution will support the efforts to repair the damages incurred on the 8 universities in Gaza. Of the universities in Gaza, the Islamic University and the University College of Applied Sciences have incurred the worst damages. It is also estimated that more than 110 schools were destroyed. In addition to its commitment to reconstructing education facilities Al Fakhoora will provide psychosocial and social programmes to the people in Gaza.”
At its launch in 2009, Al Fakhoora pledged to support 1000 students through scholarships. To date the programme has supported over 300 students. The agreement will see that a further 700 students are supported to complete their higher education. Commenting on the donation made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Marcio Barbosa, Chief Executive Officer, Education Above All Foundation, said: “EAA is grateful for the leadership contribution made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Government of the State of Qatar. This represents a milestone towards the achievement of Al Fakhoora’s current mission of reconstructing and rehabilitating educational facilities in Gaza. MOFA’s donation is testament to the recognition by the State of Qatar of the urgent need to improve the lives of people in Gaza through education”.