Posted on June 23, 2014

Vodafone Qatar today announced the launch of My First Amazon Adventure, to be its local edition of personal Firsts, aligning with Vodafone Group’s global Firsts platform. My First Amazon Adventure will see inspiring role model Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulla Al Thani, mentoring a group of 6 young Qatari Adventurers. These Adventurers, aged between 17 and 24, will go on a journey of a lifetime to fulfill a personal achievement over a 21-day trek across the Brasilian Amazon, where they will build a school for a local community.

The Adventurers are Mohammed Al Shammeri , Tameem Al Hammadi, Leila Al Tamimi, Noor Al Mohannadi , Maqdeem Al Naama  and Aisha Al Naama. Firsts, initially launched by Vodafone Group in January 2014, is all about human endeavor and achieving something remarkable for the first time enabled by the use of Vodafone technology. My First Amazon Adventure gives the young Adventurers the opportunity to change people’s lives and affect a community in Brasil for the better. In the process of doing this, they will achieve an unforgettable First.

Kyle Whitehill, Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Qatar said: “We’re honoured to have such an inspiring personality, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulla Al Thani, contributing to the success of this wonderful challenge. My First Amazon Adventure underlines Vodafone Qatar’s commitment to provide unique growth and development opportunities for the youth of the country. The Vodafone Firsts programme is designed to empower many to achieve what they thought could be impossible. Firsts brings about fascinating and unique experiences.”

Vodafone Firsts presents My First 1 [qatarisbooming.com].JPG

“Our technology connects people. By enabling connections, we are improving people’s lives. We are putting our ability to connect people to good use, enabling them to do remarkable things for the first time.  As a leader and innovator, Vodafone wants to support more of these life-changing moments to connect with people everywhere.” Whitehill added.

About six months ago, in the remote Amazonian town of Manipur, there used to be a community center and school, escola di 22 Septembro, that was critical for the development of this community in Brasil. 300 students would come from near and far, some travelling an hour by canoe, to reach the school to receive their education. This town, like many around it, lives very close to the poverty line and rely heavily on the community to stick together and to create progress, especially for the youth of the town.

Speaking about Firsts, Zeena Abu-Issa, Events & Sponsorship Manager at Vodafone Qatar said: “Imagine the devastation that hit the town when there was an electrical fault at the school; this meant that half of the building was burnt down. Without the funds to rebuild, and with a strong desire to continue to educate the youth in this community, the circumstances didn’t allow for full education to be provided for everyone.”

“Right here, in this village, Vodafone Qatar has decided to extend an arm, and help build what was once known as a main hub for education, community gatherings as well as many childhood memories for the generations that graduated from this school. Vodafone is going there to bring together the community under one roof, and bring back education to be part of their life like it once was. We are proud to be part of this initiative as it allows touching people’s lives and being part of an achievement. With that, we are enabling this support through this initiative: My First Amazon Adventure.”

The 7 Qatari youths have been selected with parental consent and they will be accompanied by senior expert trainers as they volunteered to be part of this journey. Eventually when the school is restored, the young Qataris will engage with the students and exchanges experiences.

In order for this initiative to come to reality, Vodafone’s technology plays a critical role along the way. Abu-Issa added: “Being part of an international brand like Vodafone means we can provide access to our technology in many places around the world. We are proud to say that our Adventurers’ full telecommunications needs will be looked after by Vodafone. Vodafone Qatar has also partnered with OM Signal Technology to equip the adventurers with compression skins that enclose embedded biometric devices powered by Machine 2 Machine (M2M) technologies which will capture and store data such as heart rate, breathing, steps taken, etc. These wearable garments also help to activate blood circulation, enhance performance and allow muscle recovery faster. Additionally, the Adventurers will be using the latest in wrist-band technology to track their health and wellbeing. Lastly, Vodafone will be enabling the school with internet connection and smart boards and tablets which will add considerable value to the students at the school.”

The group will be seen climbing Brasil’s highest mountain, SugarLoaf mountain, and trekking through the wilds of the Amazon jungle. It is expected that the physical challenges they will face will reshape them forever with the cultural experience of working with the local community in Brasil by building the school and having the greatest impact.

Vodafone Firsts presents My First 2 [qatarisbooming.com].jpg

Sheikh Mohammed Al Thani said: “I’m very happy to be part of such a fantastic initiative. Firsts  is a truly inspiring programme that allows everyone around the world to achieve their dreams. Anyone can push themselves beyond their own physical and mental limits to achieve their dream by committing the necessary efforts to make this happen. I am honoured to see Qataris, especially the young, pushing themselves way outside their comfort zone and what they know, to achieve something they never dreamed possible. “My First Amazon Adventure” is a journey of self-discovery. It is as much about an incredible adventure as it is about global citizenship helping youths overcome their personal challenges and raise awareness of youths in need around the globe. I am delighted and honored to be seen as a role model and look forward to providing the encouragement and support along the way to ensure that our mission of rebuilding the school is the greatest success and leaves legacy in the Amazonian town of what Qatari culture is all about. The initiative also helps to promote the benefits of fitness, community engagement and innovation whilst pushing our Adventurers to test their own physical boundaries.”

Throughout the entire 21-day journey, Vodafone Qatar will be posting daily feeds on multiple social media platforms to update followers.

Rosie Garthwaite, Executive Producer of Mediadante, said: “Mediadante is thrilled that Vodafone Qatar is in full support of this great opportunity. Last year, we climbed Mount. Everest with Sheikh Mohammed Al Thani and it was an incredible challenge to film at base camp, let alone the top. This year's adventure, mentored by Sheikh Mohammed, will be just as tough for our camera team. We have done mountains before but trekking through jungles, canoeing up the Amazon, sleeping in hammocks and building our own edit suites every night to send videos and other content back to Doha is a new kind of challenge for us. Luckily we will have the Vodafone technology to help us with that. We are looking forward to being a part of the QMA's Year of Culture, Qatar Brasil 2014 too, as the 7 young Qataris Adventurers we take across the country win over the Brasilian people one laugh and smile at a time.”

The young Qatari Adventurers participating in “My First Amazon Adventure” will jump on board this unforgettable journey on the 7th of August and will return on the 28th of August, 2014.

More information about My First Amazon Adventure can found at www.vodafone.qa/FirstsAmazon.

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