QFF announces new projects for Japan
June 22 2013 01:15 AM

QFF announces new projects for Japan

Four new projects were announced recently after a three-day field visit by a Qatar Friendship Fund (QFF) team to the Tohoku region of Japan.

Since its inception, QFF has provided funding to six projects that reach out to victims in areas affected by the 2011 tsunami in Japan. Over a three-year period, HH the Emir has pledged financial assistance of $100mn to Japan to help in relief efforts and accelerate the recovery of victims.

The visit provided an opportunity to meet the Tohoku community members, better understand local needs, monitor and evaluate ongoing projects and identify existing requirements. The four projects - a science facility for children, a community sports centre and a fish storage facility - were the outcome of a public call for such services while the fourth project was developed in partnership with a not-for-profit organisation, offering support and advice to upcoming entrepreneurs.

In Shirakawa city, 180km from Tokyo, a project involving a sports centre, stadium and gymnasium will receive funding from QFF. After the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011, which followed a devastating earthquake and tsunami, the local gymnasium in Shirakawa was used as a refuge centre.

The Shirakawa Dream - Qatar Sports Park will benefit up to 150,000 people of all ages. During a meeting with the QFF team, the mayor of Shirakawa highlighted how the project would provide critical health benefits.

QFF Science Complex, a children’s science facility proposed by Tohoku University, will provide students in disaster-hit areas an opportunity to fuel their interest in science and manufacturing technology. The project will extend educational support to elementary and junior high-school children in Miyagi prefecture, many of whom are still receiving education in temporary buildings. Approximately 10,000 children will benefit annually.

A new project in partnership with Nippon International Co-operation for Community Development will revitalise the fishing industry in the Sanirku area. The project will include the construction of a fish storage facility in Karakuwa-cho, Kesennuma (Miyagi) and provide assistance in developing the marketing skills of local fisherman. It is expected to benefit 330 people directly and 746 fishing households indirectly.

Business rehabilitation is at the heart of a newly-funded project called Qatar Tohoku Innovators’ Platform (QTIP), in partnership with IMPACT Foundation Japan. The project encourages and equips entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs of Tohoku to play a key role in regional regeneration through a globally-connected network of
start-up communities.

Over a five-year period, approximately 118,865 people are expected to benefit directly.

HE the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Dr Khalid bin Mohamed al-Attiyah said: “We are delighted to announce the four new projects and, in doing so, assist in building lives and reshaping the future. These steps reflect the vision of HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani and HH the Heir Apparent Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.”


‘Verified’ status for MoI’s Twitter accounts

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) accounts in Arabic and English have got ‘verified account’ status by Twitter Inc.

The accounts were verified as a result of successful deployment of the latest technology by the ministry, especially the social media in connecting it with the residents of the country and the outside world to introduce its activities, said a ministry statement.

The account is expected raise security awareness among the people and also convey latest security related events at the earliest eliminating any chance of spreading rumours, it said.

As both Twitter accounts of the ministry - (@MoI_Qatar) in Arabic and (@MoI_QatarEn) in English and other languages - got verified, now the public can verify the accounts by signing on the Twitter profile of ministry. This will help in getting rid of fake pages as seen in many social networking platforms.

The ministry opened its window in the social media websites in September 2011 in Arabic and English along with other languages such as Hindi, Urdu, Nepal and Malayalam. The total number of followers on both accounts of the ministry is more than 87,700.

While thanking the followers on various social media channels for reposing trust on the ministry activities, it felt more people are now relying on the information and other news reports issued on these pages than following unreliable sources.

The ministry reaffirmed its commitment to transparency, interaction and following up incidents to enhance the communication channels and also to interact more intensely with the public on different topics that it felt would contribute to the security and stability of the country.

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