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Posted On: 27 October 2009 10:14 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:10 pm

Celebrity power to inspire Qatar people

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Charlotte di Vita describes herself as a “social, serial entrepreneur.” Having spent time living and working the world over, running foundations and organisations committed to sustainable employment and fair trade – and enjoying huge success while doing so – this would seem to be a fairly accurate description. As part of her 21st Century Leaders programme, di Vita has brought an exhibition and programme of events to Doha, entitled ‘Whatever It Takes’, and will be hosting a gala dinner at the Grand Hyatt on Friday evening. The initiative features the input of some 670 celebrities from all over the world, who produce artwork which is then used in a number of products sold in various department stores. The proceeds are then reported to the celebrities who choose which charities or community programmes they would like to support, often creating a relationship between the charity and individual which will continue into the future. Here in Doha, di Vita is hoping to find a business partner to help her launch her first concept store, which will sell a large selection of products, and generate new money to fund projects taking place in Qatar. “It will be a non-profit organisation, which uses the power of celebrity and consumerism to fund fair-trade employment opportunities in the developing world,” she explained, adding “the money generated can be spent on programmes that the people in Qatar wish to support in their own country.” “The response so far has been brilliant and incredibly enthusiastic from people of all walks of life,” she claimed, noting that “although the challenge of addressing sustainability is difficult here, there is more of an opportunity to make an impact.” “There is the wealth here to invest in green technology and the potential as this country continues to be built,” she argued, “so I wanted to come here to show what we can do.” And her long-term plans include a “sustainability and arts centre” which will use leaders from the worlds of sports, film, music and the arts to engage in a programme of “edutainment” – educating people whilst appealing to their interest in popular culture.