The Sunday’s event was jointly hosted by the Omani British Friendship Association and the Anglo-Omani Society, at Grand Hyatt Muscat, under the auspices of H E Dr Madeeha bint Ahmed bin Nassir al Shaibaniyah, Minister of Education.
A delegation of senior staff from the Outward Bound Trust, the UK’s leading provider in outdoor, experiential learning, spoke about the role Outward Bound has played in the UK for 78 years. Each year some 35,000 people undertake training courses with the Outward Bound Trust, ranging from young people in schools, to the emerging talent of leading companies.
Today Outward Bound has training centres in 32 countries, and whilst the Outward Bound Trust in UK was founded back in 1941, Outward Bound in Oman, the first Outward Bound centre in an Arabic-speaking nation, celebrates ten years of operations in 2019. Established by Ministerial Decision under the Ministry of Social Development, Outward Bound has grown rapidly in Oman, today employing 33 full-time staff, and delivering training courses for more than 2,000 people in Oman each year, a number that will increase in the coming years thanks to the construction of three national training centres.
Outward Bound Oman chairman, Suleiman al Harthy said, “This event was a great opportunity to get many of the leading institutions connected to youth training and development in Oman under one roof to listen to best practice and current thinking. The issue of how best to prepare the next generation of citizens and future leaders in government and the private sector in this rapidly changing world is a challenging one for any country, so there is much that can be learnt through sharing ideas.”
British Ambassador to Oman, H E Hamish Cowell, spoke warmly about the depth of the long-standing relations between Oman and the UK. “Our very special friendship manifests itself in many ways. His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said places great emphasis on preparing the youth of Oman to be active and productive citizens, and on equipping them with tools to embrace the challenges of technology. It gives me great pleasure to see such a strong and healthy partnership between the Outward Bound Trust in the UK, and Outward Bound here in Oman.”
In the summer of 2019, supported by a grant from the Anglo-Omani Society, a team of five Omani Outward Bound instructors will spend ten days training with instructors at one of the Outward Bound Trusts’ seven busy training centres in the UK, before returning to Oman to inspire and train people.
Staff from Outward Bound Oman spoke about the courses they deliver to challenge and develop the human capital, ranging from courses that focus on key life skills and employability for young people, to ones that place an emphasis on work ethics and leadership.