“Women and Youth Empowerment” Meeting To Strengthen Community Participation of Saudi Women in Municipal Councils

“Women and Youth Empowerment” Program partners convened at the headquarters of Alwaleed Philanthropies that is Chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud. The partners announced the details of “Women and Youth Empowerment” Program and the various implementation phases. “Women and Youth Empowerment” Program is aimed at strengthening and promoting full and effective political participation of Saudi women participation in Municipal Councils. The partners encouraged Media representatives’ to join forces as a strategic partner in “Women and Youth Empowerment”. Media’s participation is vital in creating awareness of the importance of empowering Saudi Women.

The meeting was attended by supporting partners who actively played a role during the initiation and implementation phase as well as various media representatives. Prince Alwaleed welcomed all involved partners and discussed the importance of empowering Saudi women specially in the Municipal Councils following the directions of the Custodian of the Two holy Mosques, King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud.

The meeting commenced with an opening statement from Ms. Abir Kaki, Secretary General of Alwaleed Philanthropies, welcoming the audience and introducing the various activities of the Foundation. Ms. Nora Almalki, Executive Manager of Social Development Department, Alwaleed Philanthropies, presented their initiative, with its various programs and success stories supported by an informative video clip.

Next was a presentation from The Arab Urban Development Institute (AUDI), represented by Mr. Abdullah Al Subail, Deputy Manager of the Institute. He explained AUDI’s functions and areas of expertise as well as its strongest achievements. Furthermore, he presented the various implementation phases of the “Sharika” program throughout the provinces of the Kingdom. Mr Al Subail praised the efforts of the government entities in the various districts as well as the non­profit organizations and the Chambers of Commerce, which collectively assisted in completion of the first implementation phase of the program.

Baladi Initiative was represented by Dr. Hatoon Al Fasi, a Founding member of the initiative and Ms. Fawzia Al Hani, a founding member and coordinator for the initiative. They presented the history of their initiative and the role of “Baladi” in coordination, monitoring and evaluation of the first phase of “Women and Youth Empowerment” program throughout the various provinces in Saudi Arabia.

“Women and Youth Empowerment” partners then discussed with the media representatives, the different forms for their role in creating awareness and strengthening Community Participation of Saudi Women in Municipal Councils. Saudi women’s participation in the Municipal is planned for 2015. Questions were articulated on the interest and importance Saudi women exhibited during the implementation of the program in the different provinces. Furthermore, the group also discussed the several options for facilitating the implementation of the program in order to promote full and effective political participation of Saudi women. Phase I of the“Women and Youth Empowerment” program will be completed in May 2014 and Phase II will commence in the second quarter of 2014.

“Women and Youth Empowerment” Program is part of Alwaleed Philanthropies’ activities aimed at supporting and advocating Saudi women leaders in various areas including financial, social and legal arenas.