“Creathon Al Khair”
the campaign team (where does my money go?) received top accolades at Creathon Al Khair, organized by STC in cooperation with Tasamy social entrepreneurship. More than 200 male and female students participated in the competition, representing various majors at Saudi universities, with the attendance of charity and social activists and officials from several charities and non profit organizations.
The winning team sought to highlight the cash and inkind donations via SMS in addition to the transfer of donations from the donor to the target associations using survey research in cooperation with the Down Syndrome Charitable Association. Team “Tara Mawjood” won the second award for focusing on children’s learning difficulties and increasing awareness of this segment, in partnership with the Learning Disabilities Association. Rayana Al Saif, member of the team who won the second place, says: “the society faces
a challenge and the first step to overcome that challenge is to acknowledge it. this was the reason for our participation.”
Third place award went to (Hear Me) campaign, which attempted to shed the light on the suffering of children with hearing disabilities who need cochlear implants. Rima Al Mahfouz from the campaign team noted that “the campaign highlighted the suffering of those children and their families, and the difficulty and high cost of maintaining the cochlear implant, in cooperation and participation with the Cochlear Implant Association”. Lujain Al Obaid, Tasamy’s CEO, thanked STC for supporting Creathon Al Khair, asserting that this cooperation helps strengthen the focus on identifying challenges in the Saudi
third sector and enhances communication instead of individual work to create solutions and find out tangible steps to utilize the capabilities and creativity of the participating youth. Creathon Al Khair events were held over 3 days, during which over 200 participants from various majors in Saudi universities and colleges pitched creative solutions and ideas amid much excitement. The objective was to serve charity organizations such as the Saudi Autism Society, Down Syndrome Charitable Association, Cochlear Implant Association, Saudi Alzheimer's
Disease Association, Learning Disabilities Association and others. The first stage of Creathon Al Khair, which included the idea design for charities was held last May while this event represented the final stage for content production The judging panel in Creathon Al Khair had several experts including Dr. Saad al Hogail from Al Faisal University, Dr. Walid Al Fakheri from Prince Sultan University in addition to Ibrahim Al Suhaibani from Alamar Foods Company (Dominos) and Raed Al Saeed from STC. Creathon Al Khair is part of the corporate social responsibility strategy that aims to empower and enhance the third sector by inviting societies that suffer communication difficulties and help them find new ideas by creating good
content on SMS channels (short code) as well as influential designs on social media and solving their problems in content creation to be able to improve their incomes.
STC Contributes to Empowering the Blind to Create Innovative Applications That Would Serve and Qualify Them to Enter the Labor Market
STC has always proved its distinguished presence and keen participation in many social initiatives, especially those who revolve around a very dear community to all of us; the blind. In this respect, STC adopted, along with Kafeef and the Saudi Computer Society, a joint initiative, aimed at enabling visually-impaired people to assess existing applications or to create, design and build new, innovative ones that would serve and qualify them to enter the labor market, in accordance with trust, creativity and cooperation principles-based means and methods.
In this respect, Anwar Al Nassar, Director General of Kafeef, explains, When the Internet started to develop and evolve, the challenge to ensure the blind’s access to information and data through dedicated, talking programs accentuated, leaving them with the need to deal with and use computer applications and software. Hence, this joint initiative between Kafeef and the Saudi Computer Society saw the light, with the support of STC with the aim of enabling visually-impaired people to assess existing applications or to create, design and build new, innovative ones that would enhance their self competencies to compensate them for the loss of their sight, as well as qualify them to enter the labor market.”
For her part, Dr. Hind Al Khalifa, Head of Women’s Division at Kafeef and Director of Tamkeen (Teaching Programming to Blind People), affirms, “Tamkeen aims at enabling the blind to use today’s core programming tools and techniques, as well as breaking the psychological and academic barrier existing between them and their desire to learn the principles of programming and thus, enhancing their literacy in this respect. A great cooperation was held between Kafeef and the Saudi Computer Society to develop this training program and allocate necessary women trainers and supervisors in this respect. All training-related preparations lasted six months, during which research in similar global experiments was carried out, and content and training preparations were completed. To that end, we were keen to handle all preliminary preparations and academic content and tools, as well as to identify existing challenges and ways to overcome them. In this respect, an integrated training package has been prepared and provided to trainers and students alike, allowing the latter to listen thereto and use printed Braille worksheets as well. The academic materials required the solving of programming, computational and logical problems, algorithms and variables, as well as the use of the Quorum programming language for its compatibility with the NVDA screen reader. In this respect, it is worth mentioning that the Program women applicants’ number reached 50, of which 16 were accepted. Another 16 women participants were also admitted to take part in specialization programs, such as Law, Islamic Studies, Arabic Language, Education, and English Language Translation. Several Program admission criteria have been set, namely participants’ knowledge of Braille and NVDA, allowing them to use the computer properly. However, a great challenge still faces us; to overcome the participants’ visual disability barrier. Their great enthusiasm and insistence to learn and acquire knowledge played a key role in prevailing over these challenges and keeping abreast of today’s modern science and languages and thus, enabled them to take part in the following four winning programming projects:
● Health Center
● Bayt Al Kasid
● Afaq Al Amal
● BS Food
With God’s grace, our determination to work, follow up on the training program and ensure the development of proper and purposeful projects has grown when we felt the women participants’ insistence to learn and overcome any obstacles they face despite their literature and human sciences specialization. In this respect, it is worth mentioning that the Quorum language is considered one of the most suitable programming languages for visually-impaired people, and is specially designed to ensure ease of use and compatibility with screen readers software, such as Jaws and NVDA. The Language, thus, contains all the software concepts needed to build a variety of computer applications.
In this respect, the used techniques are as follows: The NVDA Screen Reader: NVDA is a free screen reader software that would allow the blind and visually-impaired people to have access to and use Microsoft Windows-powered computers by converting any screen picture to a readable text sound. In this respect, the user would be able to hear any of the screen contents by moving the cursor thereon, while navigating using the keyboard. Furthermore, NVDA allows users to read screen contents using Braille, on devices featuring electronic Braille displays.
Sahar Al Shunnar and “Bayt Al Kasid”
Sahar Al Shunnar, holder of a Bachelor of Arts in Arabic Language and Literature and one of the women beneficiaries of the Initiative, says, “I am a lover of the Arabic language, and read a lot about the Arabic literature and poetry of all writers and poets. My visual disability was never a major obstacle to my enthusiasm to acquire knowledge and education. When I learned about the training program, I felt a sense of fear and wonderment that encouraged me to enter this rigorous academic field. My enthusiasm and passion led me to discover this new world and acquire the basic knowledge and principles thereof. My greatest concern was how to take advantage of and use the programming language in my Arabic Language specialization; a major I studied in the university and I loved since I was just a child. Hence, my parents and colleagues nurtured my enthusiasm and encouraged me to register and enroll in the Program. At the beginning, the women supervisors helped me overcome many obstacles and challenges that were facing me, until I was all ready to start and acquire the programming language principles and basics. With the participation of my colleague, Amal Al Asfour, and through our project’s win in the Bayt Al Kasid program, I was able to secure an advanced position among all winning projects, and, I hope it will be of great use!”
The Bayt Al Kasid Project
● The Bayt Al Kasid is a dedicated program, intended to introduce the basic purposes of poetry while presenting selected verses in classical and colloquial language.
● The Program starts by welcoming the users, then introduces them to the concept of poetry and asks them to enter the poetic subject they wish to read about, noting that it contains a number of certain subjects. If a user enters an unavailable, non-existent subject, a message appears to them, stating the unavailability of written subject. Users are, then, allowed to choose a different, desired subject. The Program, subsequently, displays the relevant concept and asks users to press number 1 if they wish to have the verse provided in classical language, or number 2 if they wish to read it in colloquial language. Another message, asking users if they wish to learn more, subsequently pops on the screen, to which they answer with a Yes or No, prior to signing out.
Samira Al Otaibi and “BS Food”
Samira Al Otaibi, the first blind holder of a Bachelor of Arts in English Language Translation from King Saud University and current Masters of Arts in Media and Communication student, says, “As Helen Keller once said, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all”, I won the first place in scientific research in the GCC, and occupied other advanced positions at the KSU and KSA levels. I am passionate about blind assistive technologies, training, translation, and Arabic literature, and I am an inspirational speaker who led more than 5 motivational lectures across various cities in KSA. Blind people face many challenges, implying their inability to enroll in scientific and health specializations in our universities. So, how about programming and its learning opportunities? The Tamkeen (Teaching Programming to Blind People) Initiative made me believe that blind people are capable of innovation and creation and thus, must be provided with the chances and opportunities they deserve. Programming has, therefore, changed many concepts I believe in and through which, I learned a lot of new calculation, logic, analysis and critical thinking principles. I lived three weeks of pure wonderment and passion, learning all about this field and taking advantage of every possible chance and lesson. In this respect, I would like to extend my gratitude and appreciation to all trainers for their academic and training abilities and competencies, as well as for their keen support provided to participants, allowing them to learn more about these modern sciences despite their specializations. Our capabilities to acquire such information were astounding and were, thus, reflected in our projects!”
The BS Food Project
● I, along with my colleague Balsam Al Tawil, presented my BS Food project, combining all King Saud University restaurants in just one application and thus, ensuring easy access thereto, without having to go distances to make sure of their availability or location.
● This Project is totally compatible with the screen reader on which the blind people rely. In this respect, the Saudi Vision 2030 is keen to integrate and empower all people with disabilities like others. To that end, we aimed at making this map available to all society members, so as to meet all their needs in line with their health goals and personal aspirations.
● We hope to have the Program implemented at higher levels in Riyadh, turning it into a smartphone application and thus, taking advantage thereof at the KSA level and translating it into several international languages to ensure its availability to the largest possible segment of people.
Al Nasser Visits Cancer Patients at King Fahad Medical City in Riyadh
In coordination with the Saudi Cancer Society, Eng. Nasser Al Nasser, STC Group CEO, cancer patients at the King Fahad Medical City. During his visit, Al Nasser toured around the hospital with Saudi Cancer Society Chairman Dr. Mohammad Al Kanhal and checked on oncology patients. Meanwhile, Al Kanhal presented an honorary award to STC in appreciation of its significant role in supporting the Society’s activity and different programs.
In addition, Al Nasser assures on the significance of the partnership between the private sector and the charity sector. Furthermore, Al Nasser pointed out that his visit is part of STC’s leading role in achieving sustainability and enabling social work in the Kingdom through its strategy that is aimed at serving the society in all walks of life.
Dr. Fahad Alghofily, Executive Director of Medical Affairs at the King Fahad Medical City, thanked the STC and the Saudi Cancer Society delegation for the visit, saying that he is hopeful that further fruitful cooperation between STC and the King Fahad Medical City is yet to come.
STC sponsors the rehabilitation and support of 15 children in the "Development of Children Cochlear Implants Skills Program" for training in collaboration with the "Saudi Association of Sign Language Interpreters".
The child, Turki Al Maqati (4 years) gets out from his father's car enthusiastically, to enter the MediCare Building to reach for "Be creative" Center in Al Takhassusi St., one of the most important roads of the capital Riyadh. Turki, who came from Al Kharj City "80 kilometers south of Riyadh," suffered from hearing impairment that forced him to undergo recently for "cochlear implant" benefiting alongside 15 of his peers from the "Development of Children Cochlear Implants Skills" Program, which is organized by the Saudi Association of Sign Language Interpreters through “MediCare Center” and other centers specialized in rehabilitating and training the children on developing the skills of speech and communication. "Development of Children Cochlear Implants Skills" Program is the result of a joint cooperation between STC, the major telecommunications Company in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, and the newly established association (May 2017).
Turki’s mother asserts that the hearing impairment prevented her son from communicating with others, in addition the statue of isolation, outbursts of anger and deep crying he lived, unlike the enthusiasm he shows now after joining the Program with the other 15 children.
According to Dr. Shimaa Hilal, Manager of the "Be Creative Center" affiliated to MediCare clinics, the monthly cost of rehabilitating a child underwent cochlear implantation is an amount of (SR 3,000.00) equivalent to (USD 800.00), including extensive treatment sessions on audio and language skills, as well as providing the family counseling for parents to enable them to follow-up the treatment at home.
"There are 450,000 deaf male and female in need of assistance and rehabilitation, through 100 volunteer interpreters, according to official statistics" said Ali Al Hazani, Chairman of the Association.
Now, after five weekly sessions provided to Turki and his 15 peers, the progress, achieving in the training sessions they have been received for two months, provide an optimistic gesture for Turki’s mother, especially with the tremendous change that becomes clear on her son and his full interaction with his surroundings, which gave her greater horizons to overcome the crisis that surrounded her family for years thanks to the "Development of Children Cochlear Implants Skills" Program, one of dozens of projects and programs that STC has consistently adopted within its projects and programs towards the social responsibility.
Strategic Partnership Between Misk and STC
In a step to achieve knowledge exchange and capabilities localization, STC and Misk foundation signed a memorandum of understanding, on. The MoU aims to empower youth in CIT to support the development of The Kingdom and achieve the objectives of 2030 vision. The memorandum stipulates on empowering youth in four areas: digital-technical creativity, social communication, scholarships, and training courses. It aims also, to enrich the society, increase the effectiveness of programs and initiatives regarding rehabilitation of Saudi talents, enhance the role of women, develop special content for children, produce awareness videos, organize collaborative competitions for children and youth and establish a joint program for the development of technical solutions.
Captain Yousef Jame’a who has poliomyelitis since he was child and continues to achieve achievements despite his disability
Yousef Ali Jame’a, captain of the Kingdom Wheelchair basketball who won many medals during his athletic career in the Basketball courts. As well as the internal and external championships.
Captain Yousef was born on 1396 A.H., despite he has poliomyelitis since he was a child that made him bound to the wheelchair, But his determination and enthusiasm to overcome difficulties and obstacles in life and his great love of sport was a reason to achieve many achievements at the personal and national levels, thus challenging his companions. He has participated in 9 internal, gulf and international championships, where he won the gold medal in the Kingdom Championship for the 100 meters for wheelchairs in Dammam on 1482 A.H. and silver medal in swimming in the athletics championship in Riyadh on 2005 A.D, also he participated in many of the external championships, where he won with the Kingdom team the silver medal and the second place in “Fazza championship” on 2015 in wheelchair basketball championship. As well as he won with his team -Riyadh Club- the Kingdom Championship for wheelchair basketball on 2016, finally managed with his team to achieve first place and gold medals in the first Saudi Paralympic championship that was held in November 2017 in Riyadh, where he dubbed by " Desperate Defeater".
In a major step in the champion Yousef Jame’a career he was able to form a team to prove the great abilities and potentials of Special Needs, dubbed by "Stars of Challenge Team" that includes a lot of people who have great skills and talents in drawing, poetry and singing in order to participate in some events in some areas and to be an example and an ideal in the challenge of disability and achieving success. He recently managed to get a training badge in the Pucci game that considered within the bowling games.
Captain Yousef gives advice to his brothers of Special Needs to struggle and work to achieve their goals in life in order to be an active members in society, as well as he calls the community to change its outlook of Special Needs and accept its members, where many of them have been able to achieve great successes and multiple with their wheelchair, With care and struggle there is no impossible in life.
The Company has established 22 medical centers with amount of 100 million riyals, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, distributed among the Kingdom's area, where more than 3 Million checker.
The Company has participated in the project of "King Salman Science Oasis" in Riyadh, in collaboration with Riyadh Municipality with amount of 50 Million Riyals. It aims at providing scientific programs to youth and children and empowering them to have interest in sciences and technical applications.
The Company has contributed in establishing " King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Centre for Culture and Civilization Heritage" in Riyadh with amount of 5 Million Riyals, to be a guidance for science and knowledge in Riyadh, the Capital. By doing so, the Company wanted to participate with the citizens of Riyadh city in their celebration the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Al Saud taking over the reins of the Country's government.
The Company has contributed with 6 Million Riyals to establish Saafah Foundation for Transparency and Integrity that aims at spreading and enhancing the values of transparency, integrity and justice.
King Khalid Foundation (KKF) signed a strategic partnership agreement with STC, which aims to maximize the impact of CSR programs at the company. The agreement was signed in the presence of Princess Albandari bint Abdulrahman Al Faisal, CEO of KKF, and Dr. Khaled Biyari, STC Group CEO, in a celebration that took place in the company`s HQ.
The Company has supported the charitable investment project of Disabled Children's Association in Mecca (Khair Mecca) to achieve sustainable development for the Association's programs and initiatives, through directing the revenues of the donation messages sent to number 5050 to establish (the Clients' Tower of Saudi Telecom Company) which consists of 12 floors.
The Company has launched (Communication is Our Responsibility) program to activate the community partnerships with charitable organizations and associations through the event of "Hayakom fe Haykom" (Greetings in Your Neighborhood) that is set up in numbers of public parks in different cities of the Kingdom while giving the opportunity to charitable entities to present their charitable projects an initiatives to the public.
The Company has supported King Fahad National Centre for Children's Cancer and Research which is affiliated to King Faisal Specialist Hospital in Riyadh through sponsoring the project of entertainment and educational halls dedicated to children who benefit from the Centre's services.
The Company has supported " BENAA Summer Caravan 2017" that was launched by Charity Association for Orphans Care at Eastern Region (BENAA), where the orphan kids of the Association participate in, and started from Dammam to the Southern boundary and the slogan # Their Support is Our Duty. It aims at conveying the message of our loyality and gratitude to our heroes in the Southern boundary of the Kingdom.
The Company has created the Communication Marathon 2017 inside the headquarter of the Company in Riyadh, stressing on the values of Company, represented in "Employee Comes First" and "One STC Team" and aiming at spreading the correct healthy culture and call for practicing sport regularly.
The Company has supported the project of "the Third Companion" organized by The Saudi Charity Association for Alzheimer's Disease in many areas of the Kingdom, aiming at providing 100 wrist watch that works by satellite in order to locate their users of Alzheimer's patients.
The Company has established many blood donation campaigns in its headquarter and many areas of the Kingdom.
The Company has sponsored the integration forum for the development of slums, organized by Bunyan Women's Charitable Association for Family Development in Riyadh. The Company emphasizes through this kind of support on its social and humanitarian role in supporting the specialized associations in this field.
The Company hosted more than 100 child from Insan (human) Association in an entertainment day via Qitaf Smile.
The Company has launched many campaigns on the social media channels of the Company aiming at raising the awareness and community education about the International Days:
- 1. World Humanitarian Day.
- 2. Arab Orphans Day.
- 3. World Autism Awareness Day.
- 4. World Kidney Day.
- 5. World Diabetes Day.
- 6. World Civil Defense Day.
- 7. International Stuttering Awareness Day.
- 8. International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
- 9. International Volunteer Day.
The Company has launched "1000 Volunteers Campaign" synchronized with the International Volunteer Day to enable the employees of the Company to participate effectively in the service of the community. This Campaign is in line with the Kingdom's Vision 2030 that aims at increasing the volunteers number to one million, through making use of the experience, knowledge and skills that STC employees have in various fields which qualify them to be creative and make an added value in many fields of volunteerism through organizations specialized in charitable and humanitarian works.
The Company has sponsored the first Saudi Paralympic Championship in Riyadh in which more than 300 players have participated and they represent 15 clubs across the Kingdom. They competed in 8 different games, accomplished many achievements and took advanced posts. By doing so, the Company is stressing on its role in supporting and developing all sport activities, especially the sport of persons with disabilities.
The Company has sponsored the events of Cultural Street Festival in Riyadh for the second time, which is organized by the Municipality of Riyadh. This festival is a cultural program includes various types of culture: reading, arts, paint, sculpture, folkloric shows and its events are conducted at an open area where all segments of the society can attend.