The Qatar Charity Eastern Sudan Development Project was formally launched on 3 September 2008 in the presence of His Excellency Ali bin Hassan Al-Hammadi, Qatar Ambassador in Sudan, and Dr Mustafa Osman Ismail, Advisor to the President of Sudan. Upon signing agreements with implementing agencies and contractors, Mr Al-Nameh, Director General of Qatar Charity, stated: "This generous funding from the Government of Qatar recognises the experience of Qatar Charity to implement these projects in the best way for the benefit of some of the poorest people in Sudan. It is hoped this will contribute to lasting peace in the region".
Qatar Charity Sudan carried out an initial survey involving the local community, regional and local government authorities and other development partners to identify development priorities in the region. Close and special coordination in identifying priority projects was done with governments of Qatar (well known for its role in promoting peace through direct mediation between warring groups; hosting round-table negotiations and dialogue between conflicting parties; and establishing development initiatives to promote peace and justice) and Sudan. Implementation works for the projects commenced early October 2008 and are expected to be handed over to the beneficiaries (local community and government agencies) in one year's time.
In a separate development initiative in the region, Qatar Charity is implementing a three year project targeting particularly the Rashaida pastoral community to promote livelihoods; advocate for child rights; eliminate child labour; in addition to providing basic social infrastructure in education, health, water and sanitation. UN agencies, other development stakeholders in the region and the local community strongly support this initiative. Qatar Charity expects to continue its engagement in Eastern Sudan with other long-term innovative initiatives to address basic social needs, local economic development, combating negative cultural practices affecting livelihoods (agriculture and pastoralism) and protection of women and children.
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