Posted on October 06, 2018

The Doha International Family Institute (DIFI), a member of Qatar Foundation (QF), has submitted its evaluation of the special pre-marital education program offered by the Family Consulting Center (Wifaq), which equips newly-wed Qatari couples and those intending to marry with skills that will strengthen their relationship and enable them to nurture healthy, stable families.

The in-depth assessment, initiated in 2017 following an agreement between DIFI and Wifaq, was conducted over the past year, with the aim of enhancing the program’s content and outcomes through a comprehensive empirical study, and a multifaceted evaluation of its various components.

The study is the first of its kind since the establishment of Wifaq’s pre-marital education program in 2003, with research showing that successful completion of such programs reduces the likelihood of divorce by 30 percent. The assessment, which took place in multiple phases, was conducted by DIFI’s Research Division in collaboration with an international expert on marital and family studies. Through this assessment, DIFI has continued its efforts to support the formulation of evidence-based family programs that are based on best practices, and contribute to the health and stability of the Qatari family as a key social institution, an objective it shares with Wifaq. It delivered a number of recommendations for improving the program, as well as proposing a comprehensive guide for enhancing the impact of Wifaq’s existing offerings for soon-to-wed and newlywed Qatari couples.

Ms. Noor Al Malki Al Jehani, Executive Director, DIFI, said: “Conducting this important assessment for Wifaq is another way in which DIFI aims to support strong, healthy Qatari families. “Through examining the program’s impact on family stability, and providing recommendations for strengthening its empirical grounding to include more experiential learning and skills-based training, DIFI endeavors to assist Wifaq to better equip couples with the skills needed to form and maintain the secure, lasting marriages that are the cornerstones of healthy, stable societies.”

Mr. Rashid Al-Dossari, Executive Director, Wifaq, said: "This expert assessment of Wifaq's pre-marital education program, conducted by DIFI, is of paramount importance, as successful marriage is a highly-valued goal to Qataris and many research studies have shown that successful marriages promote mental, physical, and family health, while unstable marriages and marital conflicts undermine wellbeing. “Wifaq provides this program in an effort to promote successful marriages, address marital distress, and prevent divorce. The results of the assessment will help Wifaq learn the extent to which such a program is effective, whether some pre-marital education programs are more effective than others, which aspects need improvement, and which topics need to be covered, as pre-marital education programs are best defined as knowledge and skills-based training.”