Bridging Cultures Together

Alwaleed Philanthropies launch production workshops to support female artisans, heralding new era in empowerment

Alwaleed Philanthropies, chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, launched creative production workshops for Saudi female artisans at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University. In addition to a new diploma programme with specialised educational and training workshops for female artisans at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, the world’s largest women’s university. The programme will facilitate access for hundreds of female artisans to the university’s esteemed professors and world class facility, where they will receive a creative arts certification from the accredited university.

The programme is set to train 60 artists every 18 months in Saudi Arabia. The launch event took place at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University on Sunday, 9th January and was attended by Her Royal Highness Princess Lamia Bint Majed Saud AlSaud, Secretary General of Alwaleed Philanthropies, Najla Al-Jeaid, Manager of Local Initiatives at Alwaleed Philanthropies, Her Excellency Dr. Inas bint Suleiman bin Mohammed Al-Issa, President of Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University and a collective of female artisans. “As we work to build a resilient recovery and emerge stronger from the Covid-19 pandemic, this is an opportune time to appreciate, and fuel, the creative economy. Establishing a considerable level of maturity, the workshops mark the next stage of growth for our Artisans Programme, as we launch the accredited university programme for local artisans all whilst supporting the growth of the creative economy in Saudi Arabia,” said HRH Princess Lamia Bint Majed Saud AlSaud. Commenting on the partnership, Her Excellency Dr. Inas bint Suleiman bin Mohammed Al-Issa, President of Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University said, “Local artisans and their work have proven themselves catalysts in driving cross-cultural understanding, bringing global awareness to the rich cultural heritage of Saudi Arabia. We are pleased to partner with Alwaleed Philanthropies on a programme that will pave the way for the next generation of local creators.”

At inception, the Artisans Programme focused on supporting a small group of local female artisans with artistic and technical educational workshops, underpinning the Philanthropy’s ethos of empowerment through education. Five years on, through perpetual organic growth driven by Alwaleed Philanthropies, the Programme represents a veritable success story with the artisans transforming their crafts into high-end lifestyle products and home accessories now sold on e-commerce platforms and in luxury 5-star hotels, including the Four Seasons. “The Artisans Programme gave me my power back, enabling me to develop my identity. I feel empowered to achieve anything I set my mind to. The launch of the programme means I am able to nurture my craft through continued training, helping me build a truly enterprising life for my family,” said Saudi female artisan Basma. The programme will see the establishment of dedicated creative hubs at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, encompassing a diversified curriculum with a series of workshops focused on branding and production, addressing all facets of the art. The programme is accessible to Riyadh-based female artisans.

As we work to build a resilient recovery and emerge stronger from the Covid-19 pandemic, this is an opportune time to appreciate, and fuel, the creative economy