The EBDA' programme, an initiative to prepare and train young UAE nationals to take up leadership positions in Sharjah's cultural sector, organised its second meeting as part of the "Lunch with Leader" initiative, which aims to help young participants obtain a better understanding of the cultural sector and gain leadership experience.
Organised by the Executive Office of Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, the EBDA' programme conducted an open meeting for its participants with Rashid Al Kous, General Manager of "Knowledge without Borders" (KWB) Project, who spoke about his personal experience in leading the KWB work team, and highlighted their most prominent achievements and successes.
The meeting comes as part of the initiative "Lunch with Leader", organised by the programme, during which participants have the opportunity to engage with heads and directors of cultural institutions and initiatives in Sharjah and the UAE, to learn about their experience in leading their organisations and benefit from their expertise, in addition to exchanging ideas and views on how to develop the cultural sector.
During the meeting that took place at Al Majaz Waterfront in the presence of Ahmed Al Suwaidi, Manager of EBDA' programme, Al Kous praised the great support given by H.H. Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, to the KWB project since it was launched in 2008.
"The directives issued by the Ruler of Sharjah to promote a culture of reading in the local community and among people of all ages through the distribution of books to Emirati families in the Emirate, have been a key supporter for the KWB team as well as a motivation to meet any challenges and achieve the objectives of the project within the predetermined time schedule," the KWB project manager said.
He also remarked that Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Head of the KWB Organising Committee, has been directly following up all phases of work, and encouraging the team to develop further ideas that ensure the swift completion of plans for providing every Emirati home with a library of books across the emirate of Sharjah.
Highlighting challenges facing the project, Al Kous said, "Every project may face many challenges, most notably convincing people of the importance and effectiveness of the idea, as well as the completion of plans within the predetermined time period, which is especially true as the cultural sector is like no other, the will to achieve positive change must stem from within the person himself. Working in the cultural field is not a conventional job, but means to serve the community." Emphasising the importance of the KWB project, Ahmed Al Suwaidi, Manager of the EBDA' programme, said the KWB project is one of the most important cultural initiatives launched by the Emirate of Sharjah in recent years, and is a groundbreaking achievement in the UAE. The project encourages young Emiratis develop their management and leadership skills in the cultural sector, which would contribute to enhancing the UAE's cultural landscape.
He went on to add that the EBDA' programme is keen to host the leaders of UAE's cultural institutions in order to introduce today's youth and future leaders to management and leadership skills and train them on how to overcome challenges and achieve greater heights within the specified period of time, and in line with the directives of Sharjah and the UAE's wise leadership, known for its great support and interest in the cultural sector.
The EBDA' programme aims to provide training as well as management and leadership development skills to young leaders through theoretical classroom training and practical on the job training, in addition to participating in cultural events.
The list of partners and host organisations that will provide on the job training opportunities or internships for EBDA participants include the Executive Office of Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, the Sharjah Department of Culture and Information, the Sharjah International Book Fair, the UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY), Knowledge without Borders, and the Emirates Publishers Association.