SR8m raised on first day of Sanabel Al Khair

RIYADH, Feb. 22 – As a humanitarian gesture Riyadh Governor Prince Salman in Abdul Aziz donated one million Saudi riyals to the International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO) last night following the opening of the eighth IIRO charity festival.

With SR8 million contributed generously on the very first day, prominent donors include the Al Jomaih Group (SR2 million), USB’s Chairman Prince Al Waleed ibn Talal (SR1 million) and Chairman of the Jeraisy Group Abdulrahman Al-Jeraisy (half a million riyals).

This premier charitable, Organization of Saudi Arabia through its “Sanabel Af Khair” project, has targeted to generate SRI billion in a 10 year span.

The project started in 1987, and since then it has raised SR297 million to support Muslim causes on national and international levels.

After formally opening the festival and the Sanabel Al Khair exhibition, Prince Salman lauded the efforts of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd and said that “the government and the people of the Kingdom have jointly played significant roles in extending support to the needy persons and the Muslim countries through- out the world.”

Referring to the prisoners in different jails and reformatory centers, a substantial number of whom have already been released following a royal clemency recently, he pointed out that “there have been several organizations in Saudi cities, which have been helping prisoners to pay off their financial obligations.

“In every region of Saudi Arabia, there are committees to look after the welfare programs announced from time to time by the Saudi institutions and the government,” noted Prince Salman.

Besides 2,000 projects supported by the IIRO throughout the world so far, some of the major relief operations include extensive support provided to 80,000 orphans, running 350 educational institutions in 38 countries, and the proposed construction of hundreds of mosques in the Islamic republic of the former Soviet Union.

“The holding of the Sanabel Al Khair festival is primarily aimed to support humanitarian causes worldwide, remarked Prince Salman, adding that the IIRO, through its 80 chapters, has supported several welfare projects year after year.

Following a modus operandi of legal investment in safe business propositions, IIRO has reported SR 77.5 million of funds generated until’ 1993 out of SR297 million collected during the last seven years as part of the donations of the ‘Sanabel Al Khair’ project.

This amount has been allocated to different projects.

During his speech, Prince Salman also recalled the long-standing Islamic traditions of Saudi Arabia by saying that several Saudi philanthropic organizations have been working hand in hand with the government to support charity work.

Speaking on the occasion, Secretary General of the Muslim World League (MWL) Dr. Ahmad Muhammad Ali pointed out that the “IIRO is the first organization to respond to the tragedy of the Muslims of Chechnya – and it’s the first to extend aid to this Russian republic.”

Referring to the contributions of the IIRO in the educational sector, he said that the organization has played a pioneering role in setting up major educational institutions as well as the madrasas in several parts of the world.

Besides sponsoring 2,624 students in 69 countries, IIRO has also appointed teachers on its pay-rolls in as many as 69 countries.

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