The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, on 4 July, launched a new national initiative, the Fakhr (pride) program, aimed at rehabilitating people with special needs, discovering and developing their sporting abilities, improving their quality of life, enhancing their community participation in sports activities, and making them sports champions at the local and international levels.
An initiative by the Kingdom’s Ministry of Sports, the Fakhr program is organized by the Saudi Paralympic Committee and included under the Quality of Life Program 2020 that aims to improve the quality of life of residents and visitors to the Kingdom as envisioned in Saudi Vision 2030. The Fakhr program also supports the Kingdom’s efforts to empower its people to further build its national capabilities. Furthermore, it is in line with His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz’s Vision 2030 message, which described the ambition of Saudi Arabia’s people and the potential of the younger generation as the real wealth of the Kingdom and the architects of its future.
The official announcement of the Fakhr program was made by Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Sports, HRH Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal. Commenting on the launch of the initiative, he said: “We are happy to launch Fakhr program, which serves a group dear to all of our hearts, as they find all the support, attention, and appreciation from the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz and HRH Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz.”
“The Fakhr program is one of the leading initiatives supervised by the Saudi Paralympic Committee and falls under the Quality of Life program. It aims to motivate those heroes who did not allow their circumstances to prevent them from contributing and participating in the service of their country in various fields. We consider it our duty, under the continuous support from our generous government, to provide them with a proper sporting environment through various high-quality rehabilitation and sports training programs and by setting up training camps at the national and international levels, to give them opportunities to compete and represent our beloved Kingdom at national and global events and achieve more success,” he added.
The program will be held over a year and include the provision of health and physical rehabilitation services for male and female Saudi participants, with special training for each participant in one of the four sports fields that suit their abilities - archery, weightlifting, basketball, and athletics - in addition to providing prosthetic limbs and wheelchairs, as needed, through certified companies chosen by the Saudi Paralympic Committee. The program also includes organizing three national and international camps for around 350 Saudi participants, enabling them to receive professional training in each sport from qualified trainers and physiotherapists. In addition to enhancing their abilities and enabling them to pursue sports professionally, these camps will also give them the opportunity to join local sports clubs to continue their training.