There are 44 million orphans in the Arab world alone and caring for each one of them is a great responsibility—a major presence in the life of many Qataris.
So before we even answer the headline of this article, allow us first to tell you guys about the Qatar Orphans' Foundation, also known as Dhreima.
Founded by Her Highness (H.H.) Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser Al Missned on May 2, 2003 as an independent organisation dedicated to providing integrated Islamic system of care and shelter to orphans in Qatar, where it offers residential and non-residential services, Dhreima is in charged with caring for children of disintegrated families or unknown parentage in Qatar until they turn 18.
Dhreima turned 10 recently and you can know more about their causes and programmes as you scroll down.
The foundation helps families find a solution to domestic crisis, as well as follow-ups on social, psychological, legal, educational, and health conditions of foster kids.
Moreover, Dhreima usually organises training workshops for the specialists and social service and care providers about orphans in Qatar. You can learn more about this in the latter part of this article.
Dhreima's mission is to give a hand to whoever lives in Qatar regardless of gender, religion, ethnicity, or language. The accommodation that they provide is an alternate home and an attempt to secure the minimum family atmosphere. Nevertheless, Dhreima's quest is to be a lodging ‘institution with no children’ since they believe that a family is the best environment for raising children.
The foundation hosts regular seminars, drives for a cause, and special Iftars during the holy month of Ramadan.
Their workshop which happened late December last year was spearheaded by psychiatrist and sociologist consultant Dr. Nada Al Taibah. It is aimed at promoting the efficiency of the staff and social service providers who are involved in dealing with the orphans and the foster families, in order to support and develop the methods to address the needs of the orphans and promote their awareness and knowledge with regard to how to deal with the orphans.
The workshop addressed the methods of dealing with the orphan child and foster families from a number of pivots including the most important factors which should be considered when being in touch with the children
And just recently, Dhreima officials gathered in another workshop that focused on getting the media to dispel negative stereotypes of orphans. On television, for example, these children are often depicted as the product of illicit relationships.
In the past, Dhreima has been tight-lipped with the media about its policies and the children it has cared for. But it now appears to be breaking from this policy.
Dhreima believes that orphans are the responsibility of the entire society. Hence partnership and networking between Dhreima and other institutions of the society is the primary foundation in the implementation of policies and programmes.
One of Dhreima's partners is the Qatar Charity which is a non-government organisation established in 1992 in order to support Qatari society and other needy communities abroad. Its mission is to support the abilities of the neediest groups to fulfill human dignity and social justice in co-operation with partners.
QC has sponsored over 150,000 orphans of different ages in various countries through its humanitarian initiative "Rofaqa" which was launched at the end of 2013 and its goal is to address the issues of children and orphans around the world through co-operation and co-ordination with ministries and institutions concerned with social work in recipient countries.
QC officials said that the number of orphans that they sponsor worldwide has reached 151,105 adding that this number reflects the rapid and continuous growth of the social protection sector in QC, and its leading position in achieving social solidarity.
Moreover, some 354 orphans; both male and female, are enjoying the sponsorship provided by QC inside Qatar. This sponsorship aims at improving their living conditions, providing them with better educational and health services and developing their capabilities through a series of activities.
The sponsorship covers a monthly payment, educational and health care and qualifying and rehabilitating orphans for life. Educational care, on the other hand, includes joining education centres in order to upgrade the learning level of the orphans.
Another foundation that Dhreima has established great ties with is the Al Shafallah Center for Persons with Disability in 1999 which provides exemplary educational and rehabilitative services to persons with mental disability and autism who are under 21 years old.
Qatar's laws, which are based on the Islamic Shari'a law, do not allow for adoption.
Adoption in the sense of changing one’s identity and lineage for a false lineage is prohibited in Islam; but at the same time, it is allowed for Muslims to adopt a child in the sense of taking him/her under his/her wing for providing both physical and spiritual care for him/her.
In the Muslim world, caring of orphans has historically been viewed as a custodianship, instead of adoption, so as not to muddle lineage and inheritance issues. Thus Qatari citizens may obtain legal guardianship of a child, but this child cannot inherit family property, assume a Qatari citizen's family or tribal name, or be relocated to another country.
In Qatar, you can adopt expat children but not Qatari ones. Despite the high cost and lengthy procedures that you would have to go through to adopt a child here, the result will still for sure be in your favour as long as the adoption process was done in an Islamic way.
Dhreima said that in order to successfully integrate orphans into society, Qatar must allow them to become part of the families who take guardianship of them.
What most expats do is they adopt internationally (e.g. from China, Costa Rica, or Ethiopia) while living in Qatar. You can check with the company that you're working for to know the rules that you need to follow. But one thing for sure is you'll still be needing the same basic stuff like a valid passport, home visit report, background/police check, etc.
The Prophet (PBUH) once said, “The best house of Muslims is one where an orphan is cared for.”
It's not entirely forbidden, so why not?
The ILQ team is one with Dhreima's belief that a family is the best and most ideal environment for the upbringing of a child. Any care provided to orphans must aim at this family environment as the best solution.
Currently, officials say there is a long waiting list of families in Qatar willing to take care of these children, but there are no set policies governing that care, and that must change.
The orphanage is located in Mamoura area and the way to get there would be to go from Qatar Decor roundabout towards Midmac roundabout. After the petrol station, there is Ansar City and next to that is a street. Go in there and you will find the foundation on your right.
To know more about Dhreima, check out their website and contact details below!
Email address: [email protected]
Telephone number:(+974) 4589444
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