Posted on April 04, 2018

The Ministry of Education and Higher Education, Sasol - the international integrated chemicals and energy company - and the Friends of the Environment Centre (FEC) announced the five schools that have qualified for the finals at the fifth Qatar e-Nature Schools Contest. The quarterfinals and semifinals were held at Markhiya Independent Elementary School for Girls between 18 and 26 March 2018.

The five finalists are: Al Manar International School–Dafna, Abi Ayoub Al Ansari Model School, Global Academy International, Lebanese School and Markhiya Primary School for Girls. The final round and the awards ceremony will be held on 18 April, with the winners receiving trophies, medals, and vouchers starting from QAR 9000.

Fatima Al Obaidli, Head of Programs and Activities at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, said: "The Qatar e-Nature school contest promotes a spirit of competition and learning, and combines knowledge with fun, which is important in building the generation who will lead the future. At the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, we are keen to transfer knowledge and instill a love of learning in students, and are pleased to continue our cooperation with Sasol and FEC to deliver the fifth year of the Qatar e-Nature schools contest."

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321 students from 63 public schools and 44 private schools across Qatar took part in the interactive contest, where the participating teams and their schools showed enthusiasm and competitive spirit as they answered questions that tested their knowledge of plants, mammals, insects, reptiles, birds, marine life and nature reserves in Qatar. The questions were based on information available on the award-winning Qatar e-Nature smartphone application and website.

Phinda Vilakazi, President of GTL Ventures, Sasol, said: "We hope to call attention to Qatar’s rich and diverse environment, and encourage students to learn more about the nature of the country. Through the Qatar e-Nature initiative, Sasol seeks to promote environmental awareness in the society. We thank the Ministry of Education and Higher Education and the FEC for supporting our efforts to show people the beauty of Qatar's nature, and we call on everyone in the country to enjoy and preserve this nature."

FEC Director Frahood Al Hajiri added: "Our contribution to the development of the Qatar e-Nature app stems from our love for Qatar’s rich nature and the need to protect it. This is a responsibility that must be passed on to the next generation  in order to secure a better future for Qatar. We thank Sasol for this noble initiative and renew our commitment to providing the necessary support. We also thank the Ministry of Education and Higher Education for supporting this initiative."

During the competition, students answered live questions to gain points and win. The 5-day quarterfinals ended with 25 schools qualifying for the semifinals, which were held over two days. Five schools now advance to the finals.

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For his part, Jack Saba, General Manager of Public Affairs at Sasol commented: "Year after year students surprise us with their excitement and passion for the contest and the amount of information they learn. This encourages us to proceed with the competition and to keep updating and adding new information to the app, with help from experts. This year's contest was designed to be more challenging in terms of the type of questions, the level of skills, and the style of the competition. We are proud of this contest and the increasing number of students who benefit from the valuable environmental information that the app provides."

Qatar e-Nature app, a Sasol initiative launched in cooperation with FEC in 2013, highlights Qatar’s flora, birds, insects, mammals, reptiles, marine life and nature reserves in the country in Arabic and English. The user-friendly app has won four awards including two prestigious regional awards, and is available for download free of charge on Apple Store, Google Play store, and Windows Phone Store and on the website www.enature.qa.

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