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QRCS, MCS provide psychological support for quarantined person
Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) works together with the Ministry of Culture and Sports’ (MCS) Qatari Publishers and Distributors Forum to support the inmates of quarantine facilities morally. They have launched an initiative titled “Your Book Is Your Best Friend”, designed to encourage the quarantine persons to read books. Coordinated with the concerned organizations, the initiative has two parts. First, a big collection of works contributed by Qatari publishers are uploaded online, so that users can read them for free. Second, hard copies of these works are made available at the quarantine facilities across the country to be used by the inmates during the period of isolation. Ibrahim A. Al-Sayed, Director of the Qatari Publishes and Distributors Forum, stated, “This initiative is built upon a large body of research indicating that reading is effective in helping patients to recover psychologically. By being emotionally in touch with the material they are reading, they are likely to feel less under stress. Also, at the cognitive level, they would get more knowledge and ultimately become better readers”. “An online platform was created to give the users access to diverse best-selling, full-text e-books,” said Mr. Al-Sayed. “There are bookcases installed at the quarantine facilities, to help boost the morale of the accommodated cases and give them a less boring time during their stay”. Muna F. Al-Sulaiti, Executive Director of Volunteering and Local Development Division at QRCS, described this initiative as important and matching the organization’s strategy of supporting the vulnerable. “It is crucial to consider the psychological aspect of the quarantined persons, by meeting their needs, giving them fun, and enabling them to spend their free time doing something useful and enjoyable like reading,” she stressed. “This initiative is a good demonstration of social responsibility and another time when NGOs do whatever they can do to stand by the government and deal with the negative impact of the Coronavirus crisis on the community,” Ms. Al-Sulaiti said. To cater for the different interests of the inmates, the selected collection covers a wide range of topics in arts, law, general knowledge, social science, and religion. The books are contributed by many renowned publishing houses in Qatar, including Dar Roza, Dar Lusail, Katara Publishing House, Dar Al-Watad, Zekreet Publishing and Distribution, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) Press, and Qatar University Press.