QF helps volunteers to ‘make a difference’

February 20, 2012 - 10:49:51 pm


Qatar Foundation-supported volunteers pictured with officials of the Sri Lankan School in Doha.

DOHA: Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF) supported the work of local organisations recently as a part of the annual ‘Make A Difference Day’ (MADD).

The internationally celebrated event encourages people to take part in a ‘national day of doing good,’ promoting the spirit of volunteering in local communities.

Approximately 60 students, faculty and staff members from QF chose to take part and signed up to support the work of local organisations.

This year’s beneficiaries were the Qatar Animal Welfare Society (QAWS) and the Sri Lankan School, also known as Stafford International.

Having suffered a devastating fire in late 2009, QAWS has recently been completely rebuilt, with in large part to public donations. Now, its air-conditioned facilities are better than ever, and house hundreds of rescued animals. MADD participants walked dogs and cleaned out kennels and play areas.

According to Janet Berry, Chairperson of QAWS, “On their arrival, we greeted a group of enthusiastic, willing and able volunteers, indicating that this was to be a productive - yet fun - morning.  Both humans and animals were delighted to take part, once again, in the QF ‘Make A Difference Day’ programme.”

The feel-good factor extended to the Sri Lankan School. Established in 2001, it has grown tremendously since beginning life as a small nursery, and now educates almost 600 pupils.

Around 25 QF volunteers helped out by tending the garden, and brightened up the building’s exterior walls with a fresh coat of paint.

Volunteer Emelina Soares, a student at Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, felt that she had benefited hugely from taking part in the day of good deeds. She said, “It is a great learning experience, because now we students understand and value the experiences, skills and the education that Qatar Foundation provides us with.”

With the introduction of easy-to-access volunteering projects, QF continues to support MADD in promoting community development. The Peninsula