Celebrations and Events: Qatar National Library and the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™

By: Hadia H. Elkhalifa, Editor and Publications Specialist
Edited by: Richard Harris, English Content Editor
artwork; football in front of QNL

The long-awaited moment is finally here! It’s the time when the eyes of the world turn towards Qatar as we host the biggest football tournament on Earth. Fans have flocked to Qatar from across the globe, filled with the enthusiasm and passion to follow this international competition, a festival of sports and culture. These huge crowds of people of all ages, genders, nationalities and cultures have one thing in common and one purpose for their journey to Qatar. It is the passion for ‘the beautiful game’. 

At this time, when our country is making history, everyone in Qatar - institutions and individuals - is going the extra mile to contribute to the preparations for this massive international gathering. On our shoulders lies a collective responsibility to represent our country, to raise its international status, and to highlight its ancient Arab and Islamic heritage, its contemporary present, and its promising future.

As a cultural and national institution and one of the leading centers of knowledge and learning in Qatar, the Library has been determined to fulfil its cultural mandate by keeping pace with the momentum of the event through a range of exciting exhibitions, events and activities.  

Flags of countries competing in the World Cup adorn the main plaza in a welcoming gesture of respect and unity. 

Everyone here is fully prepared and ready; we are all excited to welcome the world into our Library, a building equipped with modern facilities, vast collections, and rare heritage items.

In the year-long lead up to the launch of this landmark sporting contest, the Library organized a variety of events and programs for community members so as to introduce and celebrate this historic occasion. Over the last three months, and in conjunction with the start of World Cup activities across the country, the Library has moved up a gear, organizing 10 events including lectures, seminars, and competitions along with two unique exhibitions, in addition to a series of workshops and other programs for various groups of community.

For example, on 15 September, the Library held a discussion panel titled “FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™: Accessibility for Spectators with Disabilities”. 

The discussion raised awareness about the accessibility features of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ to ensure that the unique atmosphere, matchday services and passion for the event can be shared and enjoyed by everyone, regardless of physical ability.

In the same month, on 18 September, the Library hosted another lecture titled “Sports Events Management in Qatar: History, Present and Future”, covering the historical aspects of managing and hosting large sport events as well as the current and future implications for Qatar.

Throughout October, the Library organized a competitive event for children and young adults called "Achieving Your Reading Goals!", where participants could win footballs.

Later that month, The Library launched an art exhibition of children's works,“Reesha”, which runs until 31 December and is being held under the slogan: “We welcome the world to Qatar 2022™.” The exhibition aims to highlight Qatar’s preparations for the World Cup through the stadiums it built to host the games, and in doing so help children connect and keep pace with contemporary events using art.

Like this World Cup, we also wanted the exhibition to be accessible to all. As such, audio-descriptive guides, high-contrast raised images and descriptions of the paintings in braille have all been provided to enrich visitors’ experience, particularly for guests with impaired vision. 

For fans of both art and sport, a two-day workshop was held in October and then again in November, during which artist Fatima Al Nuaimi showed participants how to recycle paper to create attractive bookmarks, inspired by the theme of the Qatar 2022 World Cup™!

In addition, from 30 October to 5 November, the Library hosted a FIFA 22 PlayStation tournament to unite community members with a shared passion for football and video games!

As can be seen from these events, Qatar National Library attaches significant importance to young people, and as such the Library is collaborating with Studio 5/6 to run five-day technology workshops for young adults aged seven-14 years up to 17 November where participants can explore different topics and tools, such as 3-D modeling, 3-D scanning, mixed reality, electronics and coding.

For younger children - and running throughout November and December - the Library has organized a special event that they can enjoy with their families and get out in the fresh air! The storybook trail at Oxygen Park lets little ones read one page at a time from the bilingual book, The Sidra Tree Rains!, written by Basma Elkhatib and illustrated by Reem Al Askari.

To further encourage young people to read, the Library, in collaboration with Little Thinking Minds, has organized the Sports Information Challenge, which requires children to read short essays and answer corresponding questions. The challenge lasts for a month, from 20 November to 20 December.

Last, but definitely not least, the Library has organized a special exhibition in celebration of the World Cup."Goooal! How Football Kicked Off in Qatar" tells visitors about the growth and history of football in Qatar, explaining its origins and how it developed through the decades, until the culmination of this year's tournament.  

This is how Qatar National Library has celebrated and is still celebrating the FIFA World Cup 2022™. Visit us at Education City and join us in embracing this special and historic time and enjoy what the Library has to offer all its visitors!


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