For decades, the Middle East has had a complex reality. It has been divided into two groups of countries: those looking toward new opportunities and peace, and those involved in instability and wars that have increased national poverty, hunger and despair. The region’s dynamics are not easy to understand with the analysis of simple single factors. As such, there are many reasons to contribute to Qatar Charity. The Qatar Charity is one of the largest humanitarian non-governmental organizations working to provide essential aid to vulnerable populations through developmental programs. It has reached 29 million people with its projects and initiatives valued at $1.2 billion.

Alarmed by the convoluted context in the Middle East and the number of orphan children from wars and conflict, Qatar Charity is committed to being a leader in the global emergency response and sustainable development solutions. The organization currently has field offices in 30 countries and is developing partnerships in 20 more. Qatar Charity continues to aim for a wider reach and help in fields such as social welfare, sanitation, education, nutrition and economic empowerment that will ultimately help vulnerable communities prosper.

Qatar Charity’s Initiatives and Programs

Since 1979, Qatar Charity has been working exhaustively in its commitment to poverty reduction. Three examples are not enough to demonstrate the huge impact that this organization has made, but it is a hint of the capacities and effective programs and strategies that allow the organization to fulfill its goal.

WASH facilities provision in Pakistan

Mirpur Khas, Sindh, is a dry territory in Pakistan. The limited access to food and scarce water supplies have led to extreme poverty, unemployment and threats to the health and safety of the inhabitants. In 2019, Qatar Charity intervened in the locality. It worked to promote health, hygiene and awareness through educational programs and the provision of safe drinking water and proper sanitation facilities. The organization installed 440 BioSand filters in households and constructed 278 flush latrines.

Aid to Sudan

Qatar Charity has initiated a lot of projects to help Sudan overcome disasters and improve the poor living conditions. This year, Qatar Charity, in partnership with Qatar Airways, sent an aircraft to Sudan carrying 100 tons of food and medical supplies that were later distributed under the “Peace for Sudan” campaign.

Additionally, the Qatar Fund for Development and Qatar Charity signed an agreement to implement a project to strengthen the health system emergency preparedness in Sudan. It will equip isolated health centers, train health workers and issue the emergency preparedness plan in 16 localities. This project is expected to benefit around two million people.

COVID-19 Relief in Yemen

Qatar Charity is helping 150,000 Yemenis that were impacted by the pandemic. For this cause, the organization targeted areas with poor health services. It now provides equipment to treat those affected by the virus and sterilization devices to prevent more infections. Additionally, it granted sanitizers, cleaning materials, masks, medical ventilators, oxygen cylinders and other materials to help Yemen cope with the virus amid the country’s lack of financial resources, support and medical supplies.

The Impact

The organization is committed to helping communities in extreme poverty, crises and perplexing circumstances. It analyses the needs and areas of intervention and works closely with the governments to coordinate its efforts to the country’s development strategies. The organization considers the development and humanitarian indicators of the areas, the accessibility of humanitarian partnership and cooperation opportunities. Through this framework, and with the help of thousands of sponsors, it has successfully become an example of commitment and solidarity.

In countries with weak institutions and fragile societies, dynamics make it harder to cope with disasters. Many times, the casualties and costs in terms of infrastructure, human capital and economic resources are significant. When a disaster occurs, it is necessary to act rapidly and build a proper strategy to save lives, avoid traumas and ultimately help communities thrive. For this reason, Qatar Charity works to effectively address the causes in the countries in which it operates.

Isabella León Graticola
Photo: Unsplash

airlines fight poverty
When thinking about airlines, people often only think about things such as comfort, price and convenience. Many forget to consider the different ways their favorite airlines make a difference to people around the world. Below lists how five of the world’s top airlines fight poverty.

How 5 Global Airlines Fight Poverty

  1. Qatar Airways: Travelers voted Qatar Airways the best airline in the world in 2019. The airline fights poverty by supporting and donating to charity projects in over 43 countries around the globe. One of these is Educate A Child. Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar founded this initiative to provide children facing extreme poverty with opportunities for education. Since 2013, Qatar Airways’ customers and employees raised $2.3 million for the initiative. The airline matches the funds that customers donate onboard. Educate A Child works in countries around the world, from Uganda to Lebanon and Haiti.
  2. British Airways (BA): This airline fights poverty in partnership with Comic Relief through the Flying Start program. The airline raised more than 23 million pounds since the program’s inception in June 2010. Customers raise funds when they donate via the BA website or onboard the airlines. British Airways staff also gather donations via onboard collections as well as by participating in individual or group challenges such as skydiving, mountain climbing and cycling. Through Flying Start, BA helped more than 620,000 children and youth across the U.K. and other countries such as Ghana, South Africa, Jamaica and India.
  3. JetBlue: Travelers voted JetBlue the best airline in the U.S. The airline worked with the Dominican Republic Education and Mentoring (DREAM) Project since 2008 to provide equal opportunity to high-quality education to children in the Dominican Republic. In partnership with DREAM, JetBlue can reach 6,000 youth each year.Since 2006, JetBlue also partnered with First Book to give brand new books to children who would otherwise not be able to afford books or other learning material. The airline successfully distributed more than 430,000 new books to children in local U.S. communities as well as around the world. In 2016, when JetBlue launched its inaugural flight to Quito, Ecuador, its donation of 500 books to the Working Boys’ Center marked the first time since 2008 that the center received new books.
  4. Etihad Airways: The national airline of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) worked with Magic Bus to support children and youth between the ages of 12 and 18 in India. In December 2016, a group of volunteers from the airline’s staff worked in Mumbai and constructed a sports field, a weatherproof outdoor shelter as well as a vegetable garden. Since its founding 20 years ago, Magic Bus helped more than 1 million children across 22 states in India as well as children in Nepal, Myanmar and Bangladesh to gain skills and knowledge necessary to move out of poverty.
  5. Lufthansa: The German airline won the best European airline award in 2019. Lufthansa Group and Lufthansa employees formed an aid organization called the Help Alliance in 1999. It is through this alliance that the airline fights poverty. Currently, it manages 50 projects worldwide. The donations alone fund these programs. The Help Alliance constructed iThemba Primary School in Cape Town, South Africa where more than 200 students studied since January 2018. When the project finishes, 700 students will have the chance to receive a quality education. This is important as more than 2,000 children in Cape Town do not get the chance to attend school. In Brazil, the Broadening Horizons program enables 30 disadvantaged youth from around Sao Paulo Airport to receive vocational training as bakers or confectioners. The youth undergo six months of training after which most of them find jobs in one of the many catering companies, hospitals and hotels in the region.

Beyond moving people from one place to another, top airlines in the world give back to the communities around them. Customers can choose to travel with airlines that fight poverty and make a small donation to help them in their quest.

Sophia N. Wanyonyi
Photo: Pixabay

Qatar Airways
On June 4, 2017, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain severed diplomatic relations with its Gulf neighbor, Qatar, over the latter’s supposed support for terrorism abroad, as well as its close relationship with the Shi’a power of Iran.

BBC reported that the diplomatic crisis not only rocked Qatar’s stock market that lost about 10 percent of its market value in the first four weeks but also stunted the expansion of specific airline company- Qatar Airways. Indeed, in the immediate aftermath, Qatar Airways canceled flights to 18 regional cities and changed flight paths to other destinations due to airspace limitations.

The Impact of Qatar Airways on the Country

The crisis showed the importance of Qatar Airways as both an economic engine of its home country and a transporter of food and other vital resources. Since its founding in 1994, Qatar Airways has spurred its country’s economy, both directly and indirectly, in the following three ways described in detail below.

Economic Engine

Doha’s Hamad International Airport connects Qatar with 150 destinations. To power its massive global operation, Qatar employs 40,000 professionals and as of 2016, it was the fastest growing airline in the world.

As Qatar’s only national airline, Qatar Airways also handles shipments of goods. The diplomatic crisis of 2017, for example, increased prices of elementary goods because Qatar Air Cargo had to take longer routes around restricted airspace.

Trade and Tourism

By branding itself as a world-famous stopover destination, Qatar Airways has influenced Doha’s and country’s tourism increase, spurring economic growth in the process. Ever since 2015, passengers transiting through Doha can participate in the airline’s Discover Qatar, which allows passengers to visit landmarks, including museums, beaches and shopping malls, in Qatar.

These excursions do not only promote Doha’s visibility on the world stage, but also bring foreign money to Qatar’s businesses. Discover Qatar has numbers to back its success. In November 2017, the program hosted 80 leading trade partners. According to Gulf Times, the delegation of trade partners visited the Katara Cultural Village, the Museum of Islamic Art and the stadiums that will host the 2022 World Cup.

Qatar’s emergence as a trade center has prompted its national airline to ease visa restrictions. In Sept. 2016, Qatar Airways worked with the Ministry of Interior to expedite the process for receiving visas, creating an online platform for issuing e-visas. Later in 2017, Qatar launched a free, 96-hour transit visa and extended a visa waiver policy to more than 80 countries. These visa initiatives resulted in an increase of 40,000 visitors in the fourth quarter of 2016.


The airline has funneled its profits to charitable purposes, both inside Qatar and globally. In 2013, Qatar Airways partnered with Educate a Child, a program that provides primary education to out-of-school children. During the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, Qatar Airways partnered with Qatar Charity to deliver toys for 800 orphans in the Children’s Living Center in the Reyhanli province of Hatay, Turkey.

While booking their itineraries on Qatar Airways’ website, travelers have the option of making donations to educational organizations, with donation sizes ranging from $1 to $50. In November 2014, Qatar Airways raised approximately $700,000 to Educate a Child.

Nevertheless, critics worry that Qatar’s subsidization of its national carrier stifles competition. In the decade preceding January 2015, CNBC estimated that the three Middle Eastern carriers: Qatar Airways, Emirates Airlines and Etihad received more than $40 billion in subsidies from their state governments.

The nagging question is whether these subsidies are sustainable in the long run and if the Qatari government will always have money to invest in its airline’s success.

The status quo gives a reason for optimism, with the 2022 Qatar World Cup and Qatar Airways’ aggressive expansion into new markets showing the Gulf state’s promise for the future.

– Mark Blekherman
Photo: Flickr