Vodafone Qatar yesterday announced the four individuals whose projects it will be supporting for an entire year.
A 20-year-old Qatari student, an American fitness teacher, a Colombian-American teacher at Qatar University and an Italian marketing manager were picked by Vodafone Qatar for its “A World of Difference” programme.
The programme “A World of Difference” offers financial support to four people who are enthusiastic in doing charity works and are interested in working for a whole year with a local charity or local organisation, or wants to do any activity related to helping others. Qatari student Mohamad Kamal, American fitness teacher Margaret Gigliotti, Qatar University teacher Giovanni Espinal, and Italian marketing manager Margherita Trestini, were selected from around 400 applicants to execute their own charitable projects in Qatar for a year, and they will be paid to do so by Vodafone Qatar.
Kamal, who has decided to spend his gap year on a community service project in the poor areas in Qatar, proposed a project that involves teaching, conservation, building and community work.
His decision to apply for the World of Difference programme, he said, was motivated by a desire “to experience what it feels like to be the person who actually makes a difference in the world”.
Gigliotti, who used to be 95 pounds overweight and has lost 100 pounds in the last three years through healthy diet and exercise, would like to make a difference in the lives of young girls in Qatar by creating an after-school programme that will educate and prepare them for a lifetime of healthy living.
“My goal is to help preteen girls aged 8-12 to develop positive habits that will stay with them into adulthood and prevent health problems such as the rising problem of obesity,” she said. Gigliotti has lived in Qatar for almost nine years.
Espinal’s project involves teaching English to field workers.
“I hope to create agents of change in each of our students, individuals who are more confident, and who can adapt to their new environment thanks to the tools that we will provide them.”
Trestini, who has had volunteering experience in volunteer camps in Algeria, Bosnia, Serbia and Palestine, proposed a project that would offer an English course specifically targeting Nepalese labourers. “The Nepalese community is amazingly rich in culture, tradition, ancient wisdom… Giving ourselves the chance to communicate with them is a great opportunity for exchange and enrichment. It is our responsibility now to make the programme work and successfully involve the first group of students.”
She said she is looking for English teachers, among others, to make the project successful. The World of Difference programme was launched for the first time in New Zealand in 2003 and has now become a Vodafone programme worldwide. The programme is for people who are willing to help the local community through certain projects – and Vodafone assists them in the implementation of their projects.
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