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Students urged to back $1m social drive

University students in Bahrain are being urged to join a $1 million initiative to implement projects in their communities in a bid to foster social responsibility.

The Ripples of Happiness programme promotes youth empowerment and trains them to initiate schemes that will benefit Bahraini society.

It is being spearheaded by the Coca-Cola Foundation in partnership with INJAZ Al Arab and represented in Bahrain by inJAz Bahrain.

It was launched yesterday by inJAz Bahrain executive director Shaikha Hessa bint Khalifa Al Khalifa, Coca-Cola Export Corporation public affairs and communications director Antoine Tayyar, representatives from Bahrain University and Royal University of Women at the Intercontinental Regency Hotel.

"The programme is aimed at offering youth the opportunity to be empowered and trained, so that they play an active role within their communities and create a positive impact on the lives of those around them," said Tayyar.

Tayyar said the $1 million programme is being held simultaneously in universities across Palestine, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Jordan.

It is being hosted here by the Bahrain University and Royal University for Women, which will begin on Saturday and March 28 respectively.

"As part of the programme, students will have the opportunity to learn a wide range of fundamental corporate social responsibility concepts and important principles for work readiness," said Tayyar.

"With training and mentoring from a team consisting of volunteers from Coca-Cola team in the Middle East and volunteers from the INJAZ Al Arab network, the students will engage in sustainability-focused activities aimed at making a positive impact within their communities."

Shaikha Hessa praised the country's youth for their achievements as Bahrain is one of the first countries to take part in this unique programme.

"This initiative is going to reinforce what inJAz Bahrain has been doing for the community over the last seven years," she said.

"We are happy Coca-Cola has embarked on this innovative experience and giving the youth of Bahrain the opportunity to demonstrate their affection to their country through a community development project."

The foundation will support a pilot project implemented by each university. A judging panel including representatives from the foundation, INJAZ Al Arab and various community leaders will then join forces to choose the top community project in Bahrain.

The winning idea will receive a grant to be implemented on a larger scale.

The programmes will also be launched at the Bethlehem University and Beir Zeit University in Palestine; College of Business Administration for Men and Women in Saudi Arabia; American University of Beirut and Lebanese American University in Lebanon and University of Jordan and Yarmouk University in Jordan.

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Comment by Sallyann Della Casa on April 28, 2012 at 11:38pm

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