Fifty Youth Panel members of the Supreme
Committee for Delivery & Legacy’s (SC) community engagement initiative graduated
on Tuesday in a glittering ceremony, presided over by SC Director of
Communications Fatma Al Nuaimi.
Aged between 14 and 21, each Youth Panel member of the Class of 2016 received a certificate and gift from Al Nuaimi in an event which was also attended by the 2017 panelists, all of whom received a handover gift and learned more about the programme.
Established in 2015, the Youth Panel was
launched to give young people their say on 2022 FIFA World Cup™ plans. The
programme aims to inspire youngsters and foster a sense of ownership and pride
in the tournament, especially with regard to the legacy it will leave.
Over the past year, panelists set their own agenda and gained unique access to architects, engineers, medical professionals and experts from across the SC. They visited stadium sites and attended workshops to learn about the infrastructure and legacy planning for the Middle East’s first FIFA World Cup™.
In her address, Al Nuaimi said the SC was committed to empowering young people.
“At the heart of the Youth Panel programme we are listening to young people and learning about the kind of future they want and how Qatar hosting the World Cup can make this a reality,” she said.
“The work you have put in over the past year will help us to achieve our collective ambitions. Your opinions and ideas have made a difference. I urge you to remain committed to our cause as we work hard to deliver the legacy this tournament and our country deserves.”
Graduate Abdulla Al Musleh described being
a Youth Panel member as a phenomenal experience.
“It’s difficult to pick one highlight,” he explained. “It’s the kind of experience that cannot be repeated. You meet fantastic people who are optimistic and committed to helping the local community.
“I feel very privileged that the World Cup will be here, but it’s not just about the tournament – it’s about what happens afterwards. The World Cup is the first step for Qatar. It will be very exciting in 2022. I would like to be involved, maybe as a volunteer. My experience with the Youth Panel has inspired me – it was phenomenal.”
Abdulla, a student at Gulf English School, said visiting Al Wakrah Stadium was
a poignant moment.
“In Al Wakrah you see the speed of the project and the fact it’s growing all the time. A few years ago it was just a piece of land but now you see the stadium coming to life. It was amazing to stand in the middle of the stadium, in the centre of what is going to be one of the most used pitches during the World Cup. I was thinking of the designer, Zaha Hadid, and the legacy she’s leaving behind.”
also had some key advice for future Youth Panel members.
He said: “You have to ask questions because you won’t get another opportunity like this. The type of people you meet is fantastic. They are optimistic and really want to do something for the community.
“The organisation of the Youth Panel is very good. I have done a lot of volunteering in Qatar and nobody takes it as seriously as the SC.”