Her Highness hears about campaign

Her Highness Sheikha Moza hears about WCMC-Q’s Sahtak Awalan campaign

WCMC-Q’s Sahtak Awalan innovation area was visited by Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser at the recent World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH). The Sahtak Awalan: Your Health First campaign was chosen by WISH as one of 20 global innovations to be showcased to health experts from around the world. In her capacity as Chairperson of WISH, Her Highness officially opened the conference and visited the Sahtak Awalan booth where she was updated on the continuing work of the campaign.

Dr. Javaid Sheikh, dean of WCMC-Q, said it was a huge honor for the college. Dr. Sheikh said: “Health and education are both passions of Her Highness Sheikha Moza impacting as they do on everyone from the young to the old, the rich to the poor. Indeed, they are two of the reasons why Qatar Foundation was created and why WCMC-Q itself is here today.

“The Sahtak Awalan campaign also encompasses education and health – it is helping to teach the public about how to live a healthy life so they and their families may enjoy a long and happy future. It is very gratifying for WCMC-Q and the Sahtak Awalan team that this work has been recognized by Her Highness. I hope that we are making a very real difference to the well-being of Qatar and helping to create a healthy population capable of fulfilling the needs of Qatar National Vision 2030.”

Sahtak Awalan was also discussed by Dr. Sheikh in a high-level debate about how to communicate complex health messages to the public. Your Health First was used as an example of how to run a public campaign against obesity.

Dr. Sheikh said: “It was a great privilege to be asked to participate in the discussion and be able to give the audience of health professionals an insight into the work we are doing at WCMC-Q in the realm of public health. Obesity and diabetes are both complex disorders but Sahtak Awalan is communicating the preventative measures that the public can take in an accessible and meaningful manner, using a variety of techniques that can be replicated in countries across the world.”

As one of WISH’s chosen innovations, Sahtak Awalan was invited to showcase its work in the innovations hall. Visitors to the booth included delegates from the U.S, South Africa, Tunisia, Austria and Italy. All were impressed by the remarkable progress Sahtak Awalan had made in such a short time and were interested in building relationships so they could learn from how Qatar and WCMC-Q are implementing public health campaigns. The delegates were told about the high-profile work that Your Health First has done in the community, including The Challenge, Your Healthy Chef, the Greenhouse Project and the revamping of the canteens at QF schools. Delegates also heard about Sahtak Awalan’s new initiative, Yalla Natural, which is encouraging people to exercise and grow and cook their own fresh healthy food.