MUSCAT : On the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of Bank Muscat’s landmark corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme, Green Sports, a number of sports teams from across the Sultanate have appreciated and praised the bank’s prominent role in supporting the youth and local communities across the Sultanate. The bank’s long-running CSR programme continues to benefit many sports teams across the Sultanate even as the annual programme brings together different generations on a single platform on the evergreen theme of sports. The bank’s efforts complement the government’s efforts to develop modern sports infrastructure across the Sultanate in the spirit of the Public-Private Partnership model.
The scope of Green Sports support for sports teams include greening of football fields with natural or synthetic turf, floodlights or water desalination equipment in areas facing problems of water salinity. The programme aims to develop a sustainable sports infrastructure across the Sultanate, thereby serving as a means to channelise the boundless energy and vast talents of Omani youth in a productive way, besides helping local communities develop stronger bonds and a greater spirit of partnership and cooperation all around. Having seen the great success of the programme over the years and to celebrate the 10th Anniversary, in 2021, Bank Muscat increased the number of annual beneficiaries to 20 sports teams, up from 15 teams annually in previous years. The bank believes that this will also help it reach out to more Omani youth in the coming years and take the fruits of development to all segments of society and at all levels.
A Unique Programme
Speaking about the benefits of the programme, Salim Ali Al Riyami, the Chairman of Al Mustaqbal Team from the Wilayat of Bahla, said that the Green Sports programme is a truly unique programme helping young Omani talent in various fields. He pointed out how the facilities were used by the community for activities like special religious and social events before the COVID-19 pandemic. The club’s Green Sports field can also be provided to other teams on rent, thereby providing the Al Mustaqbal team with a means of revenue generation.
Salim Al Riyami said that the team and the community were eagerly looking forward to a time when pandemic-related challenges are a thing of the past and the sports team could work towards a brighter future. He said that the entire management, the players as well as the fans of the team were thankful to the Bank for its Green Sports programme, which would go a long way in developing the talents and capabilities of youth in the country, particularly in sports. He added that the programme serves to complement the development initiatives undertaken by the Government of Oman.
A Pioneering Step
On his part, Ahmed Salim Al Alawi, the Chairman of A’Shabab Sports Team from the Wilayat of Yanqul, said that the launch of the Green Sports programme by Bank Muscat was one of the most successful and pioneering CSR steps undertaken by the bank in strengthening the infrastructure available to youth teams across the different governorates in the Sultanate. He pointed out how youth teams constitute an important feeder line for national level clubs as well as the National team in different sports activities, especially football, which is one of the most popular sport played in the region and in the world. He expressed his great happiness about A’Shabab Sports Team being a winner in 2021. He added that this achievement would have a positive effect on the team’s future.
The A’Shabab Sports Team received support from Bank Muscat for greening their field. Ahmed Al Alawi added that apart from football, the team and the community would now be able to utilise the facilities for a number of other activities too. Also, the team plans to complement this development with others like lighting facilities, public toilets etc., for all round development of the club and the community. The A’Shabab Team being one of the most important teams in Yanqul, these would naturally help strengthen the overall wellbeing of the community in the wilayat.
Strengthening Community Service
Yusuf Salem Al Saad, the Chairman of the Al Waha Sports Team in Wadi Bani Khalid, congratulated all the 20 beneficiaries of the Green Sports programme in 2021. He said that the team was very happy and proud to be chose as a winner in 2021 and that the programme would help in the implementation of greening of the Al Waha Sports Team’s football pitch. He added that this achievement would help in attracting more young talent to the team to practice various social and sports activities. He pointed out how the Al Waha team poured time and effort in in understanding the application rules, regulations and procedures and then submitted an excellent application in order to emerge as one of the 20 winners. Having a Green Sports field will also help the team in organising tournaments in the future in football as well as other sports. He concluded by saying that the team was grateful to Bank Muscat for the support to the team.
10 Successful Years
Bank Muscat’s landmark Green Sports programme has supported 143 teams across various governorates in the Sultanate till date. Over 36,900 members from different communities have benefitted from the programme, and more are expected to be a part of it in the future. Till date, 95 teams have received support for installation of artificial turf or natural grass on their fields, while 40 teams have received support for floodlighting and 8 teams for water desalination plants. As a ‘one of its kind’ programme, Green Sports is contributing majorly to developing the sporting skills and talents of Omani youth. Bank Muscat has been encouraged by the tremendous success of the programme in transforming sports infrastructure across the country.