ExxonMobil-Sponsored Second Edition of Green Program for Schools Comes to a Close

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More than 25,000 of Qatar’s youth learn about environmentally sound practices

The second edition of the Green Program for Schools (GPS) concluded last
week in Doha with a closing and award ceremony held at Birla Public School. The ceremony was attended by more than 300 students and teachers, in addition to representatives from the Supreme Council for Education (SEC) and ExxonMobil Qatar.

Attending on behalf of Khalifa Saad Al Derham, Director of the Independent Schools Office at the Supreme Education Council; Ahmed Salman Al Sheeb, Adviser at the Supreme Education
Council’s Education Institute, presented the Eco School of the Year award to Ali Bin Abi Taleb School for their active involvement in the GPS activities and for working on projects that are innovative and sustainable. Six other awards were presented by Khaled Al-Suwaidi, Planning Analyst for ExxonMobil Qatar, and included: the Most Innovative Eco Idea presented to MES Indian School and Birla Public School; and the Most Active Eco Schools awarded to Al Arqam Academy Girls, Doha Modern Indian School, Gulf English School, and the Cambridge School.

Sponsored by ExxonMobil Qatar, and endorsed by the SEC, GPS is the largest and most engaging green environmental initiative for students aimed to reach, inspire and reward students and schools launched by Qatar Today. The program is designed to provide a basic understanding of green concepts in schools, with more than 25,000 students participating so far, through the involvement of 30 of Qatar’s schools.

GPS goes beyond archetypal competitions and places the responsibility of sustainability directly on the students, making each of their contribution valuable to the environment we live in. Through posters and contextual stickers placed at relevant points, students were constantly reminded of the obligation they have towards the environment. A mix of government, independent and private schools were invited to be part of the program, and GPS coordinators from Mission 20 - a Qatari youth social group -- visited participating schools every month to inspect the water and electricity usage and interacted with students to instill values of sustainability. Each of the schools submitted its green activities towards the end of the program, which were then compared and scrutinized by a team of experts to determine the awardees.

ExxonMobil’s commitment to environmental, health and safety excellence ranks among the best in the industry. The company pays meticulous attention to the safety and health of its employees and the communities where it operates, as well as to protecting the environment. Initiatives such as GPS help communicate the practical actions required by all of us to enjoy a sustainable future.

“The Green Program for Schools is a wonderful way to educate the public, and especially youth on the necessity of managing our natural resources wisely,” said Saleh Al-Mana, Vice President and Director Government and Public Affairs for ExxonMobil Qatar.

“At ExxonMobil Qatar, it is extremely important to us that we reach out to Qatar’s general public - particularly its youth - to raise awareness on environmental protection, water conservation, and best practices for using natural resources responsibly. The Green Program for Schools has served as a great channel for us to drive these messages, which are of relevance to the entire community. We are extremely pleased with this partnership,” he continued.

“Green Program for Schools has the Supreme Education Council’s backing as a good program for raising awareness among our students on the importance of conserving energy and water at their schools and within their communities,” said Ahmed Salman Al Sheeb from the Supreme Education Council.

“The program monitors the performance of schools and also helps students understand renewable and non-renewable energy. All in all, it will help grow the next generation of conservation leaders, and we are pleased to see how successful the program has been so far.” Energy lives here in Qatar, and ExxonMobil has the energy to drive towards Qatar’s National

Vision 2030 – to achieve a balance between development and conservation through an environmentally aware population that values the preservation of the natural heritage of Qatar. Qatar Today’s supporting partners for the GPS program include: Mission 20 volunteers;

the Youth Company; Khalifa Al Haroon from IloveQatar; officials of Friends of the Environment Center Qatar; and Qatar Green Building Council.

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