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Towards A Healthy Tomorrow

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Bahrain marked National Sports Day

As Bahrain united in celebration of National Sports Day, a resounding commitment to embracing a healthy lifestyle echoed across the nation. With both the government and private sectors joining forces to mark the occasion, the emphasis on the significance of a healthy lifestyle was underscored by the nation’s rulers and leaders.

On the occasion, the nation in unison lauded the leadership of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and the follow-up of His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, in public health by enhancing the citizens’ quality of life and meeting their service needs. They also praised the initiative launched by His Highness Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, HM the King’s Representative for Humanitarian Work and Youth Affairs, Chairman of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports (SCYS), and His Highness Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, SCYS First Deputy Chairman, General Sports Authority (GSA) Chairman, and Bahrain Olympic Committee President, to support the sports sector.

The vibrant festivities, including fun-filled activities at Bahrain Bay led by HH Shaikh Khalid, exemplified the collective dedication to promoting well-being. Furthermore, the inauguration of the new Zayed Town Walkway by Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah and the opening of Bahrain’s first Ping Pong Café at City Centre Bahrain added new dimensions to the day’s celebrations, signifying a significant step towards fostering a culture of health and vitality in the kingdom.

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In an exclusive conversation with Bahrain This Week at the inauguration of the Ping Entertainment Centre and Café, Bahrain’s Youth Affairs Minister, Rawan bint Najeeb Tawfiqi, called upon the nation’s youth to embrace not only a sporty lifestyle but also a commitment to health and wellness. Stressing the pivotal role of sports in empowering Bahrain’s youth, she highlighted the nation’s strategy to promote a healthy lifestyle as a ‘win-win’ situation for the country.

“As we talk about youth and sports, we should actually also talk about having a healthy lifestyle, and this is our priority, especially when it comes to the strategy of empowering our youth,” said Ms Al Tawfiqi.
“We focus on having a healthy life, so it’s actually having fun while being healthy, which is a win-win situation.”

She lauded the ping hub café as a “brilliant new initiative,” adding that the nation would welcome and support such innovative ideas from its youth.
“The opening of the centre will clearly contribute to encouraging Bahraini youth to practice a healthy lifestyle by practicing their favourite hobby and sport, including table tennis. In addition, the centre represents an important aspect of encouraging youth entrepreneurship and uniting them to manage projects, which enhances their position in the development process taking place in the kingdom.”

The main events of Bahrain Sports Day 2024 were held at Bahrain Bay under the patronage of HH Shaikh Khalid.

Shaikh Khalid stressed the importance of Sports Day in spreading awareness of the benefits of sports on the quality of life, as it contributes to enhancing the health, physical, and psychological well-being of individuals and societies. He added that Bahrain Sports Day is an annual opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of sports as a lifestyle for various age groups, noting that practising sports contributes to adopting a healthy lifestyle, as well as a productive, effective, and disease-free society.

The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) also organised a sports event, which saw the participation of officials and employees at the office. PMO director general Hamad Yaqoob Al Mahmeed, who acknowledged national efforts to embrace a culture that promotes an active and healthy lifestyle, highlighted that the annual day embodies the kingdom’s commitment to advancing social awareness of the importance of physical activities for overall health and well-being. 

The Supreme Council for Environment (SCE) held a walkathon at Doha Arad Park and Reserve in the presence of Oil and Environment Minister and Special Envoy for Climate Affairs Dr Mohammed bin Daina. He indicated that Bahrain Sports Day encourages members of society to practise all types of sports activities and thus adopt a healthy lifestyle, as sports play a major role in improving individuals’ mental and physical health.

Information Minister Dr Ramzan bin Abdulla Al Noaimi emphasised the role of sports in enhancing functional, behavioural, and social skills and fostering responsibility and competition. He highlighted the government’s commitment to youth and sports, resulting in numerous regional and global achievements, adding that the decision to celebrate Bahrain Sports Day annually reflects the government’s belief in the importance of sports for individuals’ health and overall competence.

Additionally, he acknowledged the Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company (GPIC) for its support and cited the inauguration of a 1.4-km walkway at the ministry’s complex as the first of many similar initiatives in this field.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Shaikh Khalid affirmed Bahrain’s keenness to provide infrastructure with supportive facilities that promote sports and physical activities. He was speaking while inaugurating the Zayed Town Walkway in the presence of Southern Governor Shaikh Khalifa bin Ali Al Khalifa and Municipalities Affairs and Agriculture Minister Wael Al Mubarak. Shaikh Khalid also participated in the walking event organised by the ministry. He added that establishing more open spaces in cities and residential neighbourhoods, as well as allocating special lanes for walking and cycling, contributes to enhancing public health and physical fitness.

“These projects contribute to creating a sustainable urban environment that reflects efforts to increase green areas through the National Afforestation Campaign, being implemented by the kingdom as part of its endeavours to reach zero neutrality by 2060 and reduce carbon emissions by 50 per cent by 2035,” he said.

Transportation and Telecommunications Minister Mohammed Al Kabbi led the day’s sports activities at Al Muharraq Grand Park. The minister highlighted the importance of sports to enhance physical and mental health, resulting in increased focus and productivity in the workplace.

Survey and Land Registration Bureau (SLRB) president Basem bin Yaqoub Al Hamar and chief executive Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa participated in a walking event. They noted the importance of the day in encouraging and promoting healthy habits.

The Health Ministry and Primary Healthcare Centres also arranged sports and health events on the day, with minister Dr Jalila Al Sayed highlighting the ministry’s keenness to establish a health club within its premises and aiming to encourage staff participation in sports activities and health-related programmes. She stressed the importance of sports in promoting a healthy lifestyle, enhancing physical fitness, boosting the immune system, and improving overall well-being.

Housing and Urban Planning Minister Amna bint Ahmed Al Rumaihi led the day’s sports and health event organised in Salman City. She noted the ministry’s efforts to integrate elements of healthy living and sports into housing projects, including dedicated biking and walking paths, ample green spaces, tree-lined streets, sports facilities in some cities, and beachfronts for water sports.

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