The Ministry of Municipality has celebrated Al Wakra Municipality winning the Unesco Learning Cities Award 2021, outperforming more than 60 cities around the world.
With this award, Al Wakra Municipality will be the first Gulf city to receive this award, which was announced at the 5th International Conference on Learning Cities, which was held recently in South Korea.
Al Wakra received the award after implementing its strategy to transform into a sustainable city through the implementation of solar-powered lighting projects and the launch of national campaigns to raise awareness of sustainability and its importance throughout the year and in its various regions, in addition to achieving the fourth goal, "quality education" to serve the 11th goal, which is "building sustainable societies" based on the state's strategy in providing learning opportunities for all and global indicators of the quality of education.
The municipality also relied on the legislative and social environment of Qatar, involving the elderly and marginalised groups in the sustainable development process, highlighting the role of women in Qatari society, achieving justice in creating a sustainable society, engaging the young generation in developing solutions to environmental problems and preserving them from pollution and carbon emissions, and informing international and regional bodies of its sustainable development strategy achievements.
The Assistant Undersecretary for Municipal Affairs Mansour Abdullah al-Mahmoud hailed the award, stressing that it is a victory for Qatar and all the municipalities in the country.
He explained that work is under way to prepare files for the municipalities of Al Shamal and Al Sheehaniya to receive the same award in the next edition in 2023 after they joined the Unesco Network for Learning Cities.
In a speech on behalf of Al Wakra Municipality Director, the Director of Public Affairs Abdulhadi Khamis al-Abdulrahman said that the award came as a result of great efforts and years of work to achieve the sustainable development goals and in pursuit of Qatar National Vision 2030.
The head of the Arab and Islamic Affairs Department of Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Science (QNCECS), Abdullah Khamis al-Kubaisi, said that the award confirms Qatar's commitment to move forward to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and reflects the role of state institutions towards achieving the national vision and building a sustainable society.
He said it is a historic achievement for Al Wakra city.
On behalf of the Director of the Unesco Regional Office, Education Specialist Farida Aboudan congratulated Al Wakra Municipality and all the city's residents for this well-earned award, noting that the selection was made by the Unesco Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL), based on the recommendation of an independent jury of international experts.
Aboudan said that cities have become central to providing learning opportunities and enabling their citizens to adapt to the demands of a rapidly changing world and gain the knowledge to work together to solve global challenges, as well as to create a climate for fairer and more sustainable societies and a better future for all.
She explained that Al Wakra city received the award for its excellence in providing lifelong learning opportunities for its 90,000 residents, its plan to become a sustainable city, and its enjoyment of a leading educational sector that represents an investment in future generations, and its educational policy focused on providing equal learning opportunities for all, promoting opportunities for formal and informal learning and raising awareness among all members of the community about environmental issues through various initiatives.
She enumerated the reasons for Al Wakra Municipality's victory, stressing that it is only a starting point and not the end, as providing lifelong learning is a continuous process, and that its inclusion in the Unesco Global Network of Learning Cities (GNLC) in 2019 allows it to share its achievements and exchange its experiences and expertise with cities other all over the world.