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GPS recognises eco-conscious schools

The third edition of the Qatar Today-powered Green Programme for Schools concludes with an awards ceremony that celebrates the creativity, outreach and hard work put in by students, teachers and volunteers this year.

May 17, Doha, Qatar: Qatar Today and its partners came together to celebrate the successful conclusion of the third edition of the Green Programme for Schools (GPS), which has been the largest yet, with the participation of 60 schools, reaching out to more than 32,000 students. An initiative by Qatar Today, Green Programme for Schools is a first-of- its-kind outreach in Qatar that aims to instill green values where it matters the most – in the younger generation. Over the last year, GPS volunteers and partners have been visiting various schools and engaging with the youth about environmentally sound practices and sustainable living. Through unique programmes, GPS was able to enhance students’ understanding of the environmental challenges and give them the tools to make a positive change, while initiating a dialogue between students and their peers and parents on ways to conserve energy, water and electricity.

The awards ceremony, held at Birla Public School, was attended by more than 500 students and teachers who had come to share some of the exemplary work done over the year as part of GPS. The Cambridge School bagged the GPS Eco School of the Year Award 2016 for the inspired work, the school has been doing along with the students to make their catering operations more sustainable. Five other schools were recognised for their final projects and also their enthusiastic participation, as chosen by a panel of our partners. The two-hour ceremony was peppered with interesting talks and activites from GPS partners – namely Woqod, Qatar Cool, Tasweeq, Mission 20, Jungle Zone and Qatar Green Building Council.

GPS continues to have the support of the Supreme Education Council which has in the past commended it for “raising awareness among students on the importance of conserving energy and water at their schools and within their communities” thereby helping “grow the next generation of conservation leaders”.

This year, GPS had on board as the main sponsors, Qatar’s preeminent storage and distribution company, WOQOD. “Our goal at WOQOD is to always utilise our limited resources in the most efficient and responsible manner especially when it comes to water and energy. For a company that uses both extensively in all its operations, we are committed to achieve operational excellence by safeguarding the environment in which we operate and contribute to the social development of Qataris as a Corporate Citizen,” the company says. “So across the local schools we have translated this core value into ideas to reduce, recycle and replenish the water we use and minimise our environmental footprint. As a consequence, what we aim to see is a huge return on investment as the younger generation carries with it, its environmental consciousness habits and potentially joins a company with a purpose like WOQOD.”

Qatar Cool has been a valuable partner during this edition on GPS. A subsidiary of United Development Company, Qatar Cool is the leading provider of district cooling services in Qatar and is setting an example on how abundant cooling doesn’t have to abuse the environment. “We are honoured to be here today and to be a part of the Green Programme for Schools, this is a great initiative to engage with students and to help educate on the responsibilities we all have to the environment,” said Yasser S Al Jaidah, the CEO of Qatar Cool. “We believe that district cooling has a critical role to play in the country’s development and the National Vision 2030.  Qatar Cool commits to reducing environmental risks, preserving natural resources and improving economic growth and opportunities. Qatar Cool ensures that the growth of operations is undertaken in a sustainable and responsible manner,” he added.

Qatar International Petroleum Marketing Company Ltd (Tasweeq), another partner for the third edition of the third edition of Green Programme for Schools, has exclusive rights to market and export Regulated Products comprising liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), condensates, refined products (including GTL naphtha and jet fuel) and sulphur. Tasweeq also markets crude oil and other GTL entitlements (deemed as Non Regulated Products) on behalf of Qatar Petroleum under an agency agreement. “Qatar International Petroleum Marketing Company Ltd (Tasweeq) supported the third Green Programme for Schools, as part of the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiative,” Tasweeq management said.  Popular family entertainment destination, Jungle Zone at Hyatt Plaza, which features unique rides and attractions in a fun-filled ambience, is another partner who helped deliver the message in the most effective and fun manner. General Manager of Jungle Zone, Feroz Moideen, said, “As a responsible children’s indoor theme park, we take it up as our responsibility to educate young generation about the importance of conservation and judicious use of resources. Qatar Today’s Green Programme for Schools 2016 promotes conservation as a way of life and we are glad to be associated with it as the support Sponsor.  At Jungle Zone, we believe, such unique initiatives will inculcate sustainable living habits in our community and will support the country’s greater vision.”

Engineer Meshal Al Shamari, Director of Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC), Knowledge Partners of GPS, said: “The Green Programme for Schools is an outstanding initiative in educating Qatari youth about the essentials of environmental sustainability. The types of training the participants received in the previous months tackled some of the core sustainability challenges common in Qatar and the wider region. Most importantly, the programme helps create a progressive society in Qatar that is in line with the environmental and community development goals of the Qatar National Vision 2030.”

“QGBC is delighted to support this programme and encourages more schools to come on board next year and play an active role in raising awareness about the importance of sustainability among the people of Qatar,” Engineer Al Shamari added.

At the gathering, GPS also extended their thanks to Mission20, their activation partners; I Love Qatar, their media partners; and Well On, their visual media partners, who worked hard to make the programme a huge success. At the conclusion of the third edition of GPS, there was a collective agreement that this programme has to be made bigger and better in the future. Qatar Today looks forward to continuing the initiative with the support of our partners and more participating schools in the coming academic year.


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